Root Beer… I hope

So I tried making root beer Friday.  I’m still waiting for carbonation to finish in the bottles, then we’ll see if it’s any good.  I’m hoping it is, but it seems a little heavy on the sarsaparilla. If I make it again, I think I’ll filter it through some cheese cloth.  There seems to be quite a bit of debris that escaped my mesh sieve.  Overall it should be pretty good though… I hope.  It smells really good either way.

2c. shredded, sifted sarsaparilla
6″ vanilla bean
8 quarts of water
24 oz Dark brown sugar
Ale yeast (you can use bread yeast)

Add sarsaparilla, vanilla bean and water to an appropriate sized vessel. Bring to just before a boil and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes on low heat. The water should turn a dark orange color and have a strong sasparilla smell, if it doesn’t, add more sasparilla.

Cover and let sit off the heat for 30 minutes.

Continue cooling your brew to around 75°F. Either naturally or in a cold water/ice bath for the vessel. Be careful with glass vessels as they will shatter with temperature changes.

While cooling add 1/4 teaspoon of the yeast to 75°F water in a teacup to proof.

Once the brew is cooled, sanitize a vessel and strain the brew into it.  I suggest a stainless steel mesh strainer and sanitized cheese cloth (to get the little bits).

Aerate the brew either with a pump aerator or with 3 – 5 minutes of virgorous shaking.

Add the yeast to your brew and agitate.

Let sit with the yeast added for 10 – 15 minutes covered, to avoid contamination.

You should have about 22 – 12oz bottles and caps sanitized and ready

Fill bottles and cap.

Wait 2 – 5 days for appropriate in bottle carbonation to occur, the refrigerate to halt yeast activity.  I usually do about 3 small bottles as testers for carbonation.

Enjoy.



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