I love finding uses for things that would otherwise be thrown away. Between my dehydrated vegetable mix and the compost bin, there is very very little waste leaving my kitchen!
Kevin brought home a pineapple and was a little surprised when I wouldn’t let him throw the rind in the compost (after many reminders to use it normally).
The pineapple sat ripening on the counter until the rind was nice and yellow. We used the fruit for an ice cream topping and for a delicious Hawaiian Pizza.
He was ready to chop it up, so I had him ‘twist’ the greens off the top rather than cut them off – this leaves the top ready to plant without having to remove fruit that may mold. After peeling back a few bottom leaves, the pineapple greens were set in a little water in a cup on the window sill.:)
Tepache is a mexican ‘beer’ fermented using wild yeasts. It is sweet, refreshing, and mildly alcoholic. Use less sugar if you’d like to keep the alcohol content lower. With this recipe you’ll probably get 2 – 3% ABV at the most. (I say this without having measured the ABV – but with years of experience both making and drinking wine.:))
If you love pineapple, you’ll also love tepache. It makes a sweet and refreshing drink, and takes only 2 – 3 days, depending on your taste preference and your patience. Check it after day 1, if it isn’t a bubbling or little foamy on top (fermenting), you can kick start it with a pinch of bread yeast.
Traditionally the sugar used is piloncillo, I don’t happen to have that particular sugar. I used brown sugar (homemade brown sugar at that;)).
After finishing off the Chapmans ice cream with pineapple topping, I had a lovely food safe 1 gallon fermentation container.
I have read that it’s an iffy pursuit, but I had no problems with my tepache. Couldn’t be simpler, you just put it together and leave it alone! A heck of a lot simpler than my wine techniques!
Of course, an organic pineapple is best to avoid pesticides on the rind. Wait until the outside of the fruit is yellow to cut it up and don’t wash it first. A rinse is fine, just don’t scrub it, you want all those natural yeasts on the skin.
So, here’s the how to:
Sterilize a non-reactive 1 gallon container.
Add to the container:
1 – 1 1/2 cups of brown sugar (I used 1 1/2 c)
The rind of one pineapple, add the core as well if you’ve removed it from your fruit.
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil with a cinnamon stick.
You could also add a few cloves and a pinch of nutmeg for some complimentary flavors.
I was using a plastic container, so I let the water cool for a few minutes.
Add the warm water to the container and stir to dissolve sugar.
Top container to within an inch or two of the brim with cool water. Remember to leave enough space if you’d like to add a beer to it later.
Add a pinch of yeast to kick start it (optional).
Cover with a cloth or coffee filter secured with an elastic.
Leave in a warm area of your house (72 – 75F) for 2 – 3 days. If you are so inclined, wait only 2 days before adding a beer to the mix. Let it ferment another 12 hours.
Now you just strain out the rinds and let it chill in the fridge until you’re ready to enjoy. Add a squirt of lime or lemon, and a pinch of chili powder for some extra zip!!
Don’t throw them out just yet!! You can make batch #2! Use the exact same process to make another batch before adding the rinds to the compost pile.
Have you ever tried tepache?