Over the past month we’ve been braving the thorns of the rose bush to gather rosehips. Each and every time we gather them we end up stuck amongst the thorns, but fortunately they’re quite meaty little fellas, and also quite prolific, so there’s plenty to choose from, and it doesn’t take too many trips to reach our 2lb goal.
Having reached our target, we finally started off our first batch of rosehip wine. In my head it’ll end up a lovely blush colour – but as long as it is vaguely drinkable I’ll be happy.
For this wine you need:
1tsp citric acid
1 gallon boiling water
1tsp wine yeast
1tsp pectic enzyme
1tsp yeast nutrient
To start, we chopped the rosehips in half. Inside these little blighters are very itchy seeds and hairs – when we were children you’d use the insides as itching powder on unsuspecting friends – and so I wanted to reduce contact with them and used a mezzaluna – to be honest this doesn’t get much other use in the kitchen, and so I thought it would appreciate the chance to be useful.
Once chopped add them into a large, sterilised, brewing bucket (one that has a lid) with the sugar and water – stir until the sugar is dissolved and then allow the water to cool until you can comfortably put your finger in. At that point add the yeast, citric acid, nutrient and enzyme. We’ve now covered it with the lid and put it into the shed, where we’re hoping it will be warm enough – we’ve made a jacket out of a yoga mat to try and retain some heat.
Over the next fortnight we need to stir it daily and will then strain it through a straining bag (to get out all the itchy hairs and seeds) and move it into a demijohn, where it will sit for a few months, slowly clearing. Once it’s clear it will get siphoned into another demijohn for a further three months. Hopefully we’ll have a lovely wine ready for the summer. I’ll keep you posted.