How to Make Root Beer
People love root beer for its sweet and unique taste. Seriously, you can never taste 2 similar bottles. So, if you are sick and tired of gulping that yellowish liquid that they call beer in the local pubs, you can make your own beer from scratch! This recipe is 100% natural homemade root beer that doesn't contain any artificial flavors.
16 quarts water;
3 lbs honey;
1/8 inch licorice stick;
1 cinnamon stick;
½ tsp salt;
1 oz sarsaparilla root;
1 oz sassafras root;
½ cup molasses;
6 cups sugar;
1 vanilla bean;
¼ cup chopped raisins;
1/8 tsp nutmeg;
¼ oz Juniper berries;
1 oz cherry bark;
1 oz dried wintergreen leaves;
1 pack brewing yeast;
- Grab a big pan, put it on the stove and pour 6 quarts of water into it. Let those bubbles start rising from the bottom of the pan and add 3 pounds of liquid honey.
- After that comes your brewer's licorice. If you can't find it in the local stores, feel free to use 2-3 star anise instead. Cut a 1/8 inch long piece and put it in the pan. Then, add 1 regular cinnamon stick. Please, notice that your mixture shouldn't boil by this moment.
- Add ½ tsp salt and 1 oz sassafras root. It's also known as Sassafras albidum or Rootbeer tree. After that, dump your sarsaparilla root (aka Smilax Regelii) into the pan. Next comes 1 oz cherry bark (aka Prunus Serotina) and ½ cup dark full flavored molasses. It will give your beer a nice dark color.
- Now, it's time for 6 cups of table sugar. Don't worry about your beer's being too sweet - the sugar diluted in 16 quarts of water won't make it sickly sweet. -After that, add your vanilla bean. You can use vanilla extract as well, but natural bean is much better of course. At this stage, feel free to add chopped raisins if you want to, but this step is optional.
- The mixture now looks really messy and ugly, but don't worry, that's exactly how it's supposed to be. Add some nutmeg, but be really careful! Don't put too much though because 1 extra pinch can ruin the whole pan!
- Now, it's time for Juniper berries. They complement licorice really nice, and cherries give the drink a hint of cherry flavor. Let the beer boil for about 1 hour.
- While the beer is boiling, you can prepare the bottles. Get as many glass bottles as you need and sanitize them. It's very important to keep the vessels clean! Feel free to use old soda and beer bottles.
- After 1-1,5 hour add dried wintergreen leaves and pour 10 more quarts of cold water. You want it to reach the room temperature (60-95 degrees). Don't make it too hot; otherwise, the temperature will kill the yeast.
- Once the beer is ready, it's time to bottle it. Use a mug and a filter to pour it in the bottles. Put about 7 grains of yeast in each bottle, and use a capper to cap the bottles. Shake each bottle for 10 seconds and keep them away in a warm and dark place. After 3-5 days, the beer should be removed to the fridge.
- Don't use the leaves or the bark of the sassafras. You want to use the roots only.
- Don't use this recipe if you have problems with blood vessels or serious cardiovascular diseases. The point is sassafras root contains carcinogens that are really harmful for people with heart issues. It is outlawed in some states or just hard to buy in the stores. If you can't find it, feel free to order some on http://www.ebay.com/
- Don't use old sarsaparilla root! You want to use it fresh.
- Don't add more than 1 oz cherry bark! If you add more than 1 oz, the drink will smell like cigars.
- Don't use soap or dish detergent to wash the bottles. They are hard to rinse.
- Don't boil your dried wintergreen leaves.
That's how you make homemade root beer. Many people are obsessed with home brewing these days because it's getting harder and harder to buy high quality beer in the stores. This recipe will help you make 100% organic and delicious beer. Hope you and your friends will enjoy it!
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