Sunday, May 15, 2016

Some may be more real than others

Ideas for workshops in Kyneton. Some may be more real than others.

Spoon carving.
Cabbage massage.
Permacultural yodelling.
Dog unbending.
Egg whittling (with chainsaws).
Egg whittling (traditional, with axes).
Gum scribbling.
Getting in touch with your inner chicken.
Getting your chickens in touch with their inner egg.
Permacultural beard maintenance.
Vermicelli balancing.
Paleo cooking with oblongs.


Steve said...

Where is this fabled location?

Steve said...

By the way, on a completely unrelated matter, I was watching Matthew Evans on SBS making some pinot noir wine with a couple of mates, using the old food stomping method to juice them, and then just letting them naturally ferment. They got a winemaker a few weeks later to taste and smell it, and he mentioned that in a natural ferment, you're smelling for any "off" smells (of which there weren't any this time).

I think you know a lot about fermentation - so, do you have any idea how often it would be that just crushing grapes like that and letting it ferment would give an acceptable (or drinkable) outcome?

Steve said...

And, in the big scheme of things, is there something about yeast doing its thing that normally prevents bacteria or mould from doing its thing?

Enlighten me, oh Grand Fermenter. Fermentor?

PS, its foot stomping method.

TimT said...

Once a yeast gets going it can be hard to stop it. Not sure exactly why but it seems to be the way in most fermentations; the danger period is before the fermentation starts or after the fermentation has finished. The yeast has gone through the reproduction and multiplication phase and is ready and active, getting to all the nutrients before other organisms can. In doing so it creates the conditions for its own survival and often detrimental to the survival of other organisms, eg, it will acidify the brew and the alcohol it creates will act as a deterrent to other organisms. By the time it reaches around 12 per cent/14 per cent alcohol the yeast itself won't be able to stand the alcohol any longer, and will drop dormant to the floor, but by then the drink acts as its own preservative. I've never tried a wild fermented wine but our wild fermented cider last year was one of the best drinks I'd ever done. I'm not sure what happened but I think yeast of various species came together and each contributed a special something to the fermentation?!? As with wine the fruit provided plenty of nutrients for the yeast (aside from the sugar) - ie, the nitrogen necessary for its survival.

Then there is mead, but that's another question altogether - apparently you *can* do wild fermented mead but it's harder. Those bees work a weird magic on the plant nectar to make it unfermentable as honey (which is understandable.... you don't want a drunk hive).

Not sure about the foot stomping method either but I do recall reading somewhere that it was reputed to be the best sort of wine?

TimT said...

Kyneton is a rural town in Victoria - quite old by Australian standards. It's nice! Plenty of hipsters there these days though.

Steve said...

Interesting. I guess you don't know the answer to the question, though - how often would relying on wild fermentation of grape juice result in a drinkable wine?

TimT said...

I dunno. 95 - 98% of the time maybe? There's a reason grapes became such a favoured fermentation fruit, and that is surely they are an excellent environment for yeast: plenty of sugar, nutrient, and wild yeasts that live naturally on them.

TimT said...

When I do my ciders I usually notice a time when the ciders go from smelling beautiful to emitting a slight sulfury smell. This is basically because in the early stages of fermentation yeast will emit a range of esters - 'apple', 'fruit salad', 'banana' - these are the sorts of smells you might effect. Later on the yeast calms down a bit and often runs out of nutrients. Late fermentations often have a sulfury smell. Not pleasant.

With the wild yeast cider, the estery smell remained right to the end. And it fermented right out, so it had the same closing gravity as a cider fermented on a commercial yeast strain.

I'm almost convinced wild yeast fermentation is the *only* way to go. But, I suppose it can be more unpredictable.

Steve said...

I guess to do wild yeast cider, you need the fruit pretty direct from the tree? I assume your average supermarket apple (or grape, for that matter) has hardly a yeast spore on it?

TimT said...

Well, fresh and wild is best, definitely. I don't know what they do to the supermarket fruit. You could give it a go!

Steve said...

I suspect grapes may not have much done to them (perhaps a simple wash), but apples are washed and have that "wax" put on them. According to one site:

The most commonly used wax is Carnauba wax (code number 903) which is sourced from the leaves of a Brazilian palm tree Copernicia prunifera. This is a wax that has been widely used in fruits, vegetables, sweets, pastries and other foods since the 1920s - and it is safe to eat.

In Australia, growers are also permitted to use four other approved waxes:

beeswax 901
shellac 904
white mineral oil 905a or
petroleum jelly 905b.

But Carnauba is the main one used.

TimT said...

A lot probably go through some sort of pasteurisation process to, some sort of surface spray maybe. But microflora can be very hard to kill.

Email: timhtrain - at -

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