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Author Topic: Sparking Honey Nectar Recipe  (Read 1881 times)

Offline sausage

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Sparking Honey Nectar Recipe
« on: February 12, 2019, 06:18:59 am »
After discussion in this post, I set about trying to discover a recipe for a Sparkling Honey Soda drink, a little like one I used to get at Coffs Harbour in the late 70s, early 80's that went under the name of "Honey Nectar".

Was I successful? Yes I think so. At least going off memory. The result is a pretty good taste anyway. It has no preservatives, no processed sugar, and no perceptible alcohol.

I based this off a basic ginger beer technique on the Down To Earth website. This recipe follows pretty much the same pattern except without ginger. I also changed a few of the timings and amounts to better suit a small test batch rather than committing to using a lot of good raw honey.

The result is a semi-strong, and tasty honey flavoured carbonated drink.

I hope you enjoy the experiment.

I'm not ready to call this a complete recipe yet, as there are a few more tweaks I would like to make to eventually evolve this into something really good.

The weather conditions for this test were: during the nine days, the daily maximum temperatures ranged from 26 degrees C to 33 degrees C.

Here's how it goes...

Part A - Making the plant (or bug)

  1 x Jar (very clean)
  Half x Tablespoon of raw honey
  1.5 x cups of rainwater (see note below)
Rainwater is perfect as it contains no chemicals that might interfere with your batch. However, with townie water you can prepare it a day earlier by letting your water sit in a jar overnight. The chlorine and heaven's knows what else  in there should evaporate out. Then you're good to use it.

  1. Add the 1.5 cups of water to the jar.
  2. Add half a tablespoon of raw honey
  3. Stir it in until dissolved
  4. Add a gauze cover over the top of the jar.
The gauze cover will stop insects falling in, but will allow yeast from the air to enter the jar.

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Everyday for 7 days:
  1. Add half a tablespoon of raw honey
  2. Stir the honey in
  3. Cover the jar with the gauze again.
  4. Mark a stroke on the jar
By this time, there should be some fine bubbles appearing. To the naked eye it does look like mould. If you are concerned that it could be, scoop a little out on a spoon and check with a magnifying glass. It'll show up as fine bubbles.

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The last two days:
  1. Don't add any more honey. Basically don't touch it.

Part B - The bottling

  1. 3 litre mixing container or bowl
  2. 2 x litres of rainwater
  3. 1.25 x cups of raw honey
  4. 1 x lemon
  5. Muslin cloth
  1. Pour water into the bowl
  2. Pour liquid from the jar through the muslin cloth into the bowl. Double it over a few times to strain out as much dead yeast as possible.
  3. Add 1.25 cups of honey into the bowl. Stir until dissolved.
  4. Bottle the result into several plastic 1.1 or 1.25 litre PET bottles. You should have two bottles.
  5. Add the lids tight.
  6. Place the bottles into a dark pantry or cupboard for a week.

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Part C - Drinking

  1. After the week in the pantry, you should see some bubbles in the top of the bottles. And they should be pretty tight to the feel. Put them in the fridge.
  2. Open carefully after one to three weeks. Mine did not fizz like crazy like previous ginger beers I have made. But was fizzy enough.
  3. Drink it :)
What's next?

Well, there is the slight taste of yeast that I'd like to eliminate. Also, I'd like to reduce the strength of the honey by reducing the honey and increasing the water.

I'd like to record any troubleshooting tips that might come up. I was happy to get it working first time, but variables like weather and temperature may affect the results and it would be good to document workarounds.

Anyway, hope this helps you produce a batch of your own. Please post how you go and any tips you come across.


Offline blackforest beekeeper

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Re: Sparking Honey Nectar Recipe
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2019, 02:36:48 am »
Hey sausage,
thanks for the recipe!

What would greatly interst me: The alcoholic content. And of course "sugar" in it. I sent a batch of our mead to a wine-laboratory. The values for alcohol and sugar cost me about 16 Euros.

Cause... what you made there is a spontanoues mead and you probably killed most of the yeast by drowning it in sugar. as with yoghurt or kefir, this might depend heavily on the natural yeasts in your surroundings and might not work anywhere.
I tried a little spontanous fermentation and the result was a sweet vinegar. but I just let it sit around for a while.

at high temperatures and after alcohol has develepod, vinegar-bacteria(``?) will take over and make acid out of the alcohol. over time this would probably happen anyway, as with cider untreated spending a year or two in the cellar.

If you try to use less honey, the yeast might explode the bottles. just a hinche, as the yeast is not weakend by the high sugar-content.
for sale this would cause problems.
champagne-producers have it worked out. maybe look at their doings`?

getting out the yeast can be done by letting it sit for months or years. or by filtration. there are rather cheap wine-filters like coffee-filters, but they usually leave a little tinge of yeast in there. we now use a sophisticated filter for our mead. we could even filter out the yeast with it. it gets crystal clear without this last step.