As many of you know, mead is honey wine. Where I live, mead isn’t one of those bottled beauties that a Pagan can just run to the grocery store and grab off the shelves. Nope. I have to go to a specialty store in town to get mine, assuming they have it, and if they don’t, and I REALLY need to get it? I have to drive about an hour, into Raleigh and go the wine superstore there.
Loving to be in the kitchen and “make” stuff, I thought, oh, I’ll just make my own. You know…A DIY mead situation-to-be, so I did some research and it seems that mead has to ferment from six months to a year, so that project is going to be on the back burner for a while. Why this was a surprise is beyond me, as my father was a closet wine maker for many years while I was growing up.
I did find a lovely little recipe for a two week mead that will do in a pinch, so I am going to always have at least one bottle on hand until the first batch of the real deal is drinkable. 🙂
This is also a neat little project if you’ve never had mead and don’t want to drop a pretty penny on the real deal (which can be kind of spendy, especially if you decide you don’t care for it). A cheap bottle of white wine and a couple of cups of honey are a lot less expensive than that $18.00 bottle of the real deal.
So without further ado – Cheat Mead
1 bottle (750 ml) cheap white wine
1 lb. honey (two cups)
Ground clove (to taste)*
Ground cinnamon (to taste)*
Ground nutmeg (to taste)*
*a pinch or two should be all it takes, but you can taste while warming and add to taste.
Pour the wine into a medium saucepan (save the bottle) and place over low to medium heat. (We don’t want to boil the wine, as this will eliminate the alcohol, and really? Who wants to do that?)
Pour the two cups honey into the wine, and add the ground spices.
A scummy foam should form on the top. Spoon this foam off and throw it away.
Let cool, then pour the wine/honey/spice mixture into the original wine bottle. It should all fit, given we’ve removed some volume when we tossed the foam. Anything that doesn’t fit in the bottle can be poured into a wine glass and sipped, even while warm.
Place the cork back in the bottle, and place the bottle in a cool, dry place (a pantry would do) for at least two weeks. The longer it sits, the stronger it will be.