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Distilling spirits is as much the art of preparing the fermented

wash to distill as it is the actual distilling. These recipes were
prepared so that the beginning distiller can have early success in
producing quality spirits. These recipes are for 5 gallons of
fermented wash and the ingredients can be adjusted
proportionally for greater or lesser quantities. You will need a
large stock pot and a fermentation vessel large enough for the
batch you wish to produce. Equipment used for home brewing
beer is typical.

Rum is usually the spirit first recommended to the new distiller. It
is the easiest to produce with ingredients locally available to
everyone. Rum is the distilled fermentation of molasses.
Molasses is the by product of refining sugar cane into white
granulated sugar. Molasses still contains sugar ranging from 40%
sugar content in blackstrap molasses to as high as 55% in light
table molasses. While it can be argued that the best rum comes
from a fermentation of pure table molasses and water, the
quantity of molasses required for such becomes very expensive
for the hobby distiller. Brown sugar is white sugar with a coating
of molasses (use only Cane sugar, if the package doesnt say
Cane Sugar then it is beet sugar). Brown sugar (use the dark
variety) can produce very tasty rum at far less expense than
using pure molasses. Be aware that we are using two pounds of
brown sugar per gallon. If you have access to reasonable cost
unsulphered table molasses the recipe could be altered to
substitute two 12 oz jars of molasses per pound of the sugar. Do
not use more than three 12 oz jars of molasses per gallon as the
osmotic pressure due to the density of molasses will be too high
for fermentation. One could also use a combination of white
granulated sugar and table molasses (say 10 jars of molasses
and 5 pounds of white sugar).
10 lbs of pure cane dark brown sugar
4 gallons (approximate) of prepared water (see other distilling
1 sacket of Gert Strand Rum Yeast (for substitution see other
distilling information)

Heat 2 to 3 gallons of the water to approximately 130 F (hot
enough to dissolve the sugar but not boiling) in a large stock pot.
Dissolve the brown sugar in the water. Pour the sugar water into
your fermentation vessel. Top off with cool water to a total volume
of 5 gallons. Let cool to 80 F. Sprinkle yeast across surface, allow
to stand for 15 20 minutes and then stir in. Ferment for 5 to 7
days (as long as fermentation continues). Siphon into your still
boiler keeping as much of the yeast sediment from entering the
still as possible. Distill per still instructions. Age for 30 days at
distilled strength shaking once a day. Dilute with aerated distilled
water to 80 proof. Enjoy!

Easy Bourbon Recipe

Bourbon is made from the fermented mash of corn with the
remainder being malted barley and other fermentables.
Commercial distilleries use sophisticated procedures and
chemical enzymes to convert the starches in the grains to
fermentable sugars. This recipe utilizes easily obtainable Beano
tablets as the enzyme and then makes up for the relative
inefficiency by using sugar as an additional fermentable to boost
the alcohol production.
4 lbs corn meal (grocery store grade)
3.3 lb can of unhopped malt extract syrup
5 lbs of pure cane sugar (if it doesnt say cane then it is beet
3 crushed Beano tablets
1 sacket Gert Strand Prestige Whisky Yeast w/AG (substitution
not recommended)
12 toasted oak chips (for aging)
Procedure Overview:
Heat 2 to 3 gallons of the water to approximately 200 F (just shy
of boiling). Stir in the corn meal and stir. Dissolve the sugar in the
corn meal/water porridge. Pour the mash into your fermentation
vessel. Top off with cool water to just over 5 gallons. Check
temperature. Stir in and dissolve crushed Beano tablets when
temperature has cooled to at least no higher than 110 F. Let cool
to 80 F. Toss yeast per directions on package and ferment for a

week or longer till fermentation is completed. Strain mash into the

still boiler using a large straining bag or clean white pillow case.
Distill per instructions provided with the still. Age at distilled
strength with the oak chips for 30 days or longer shaking once
daily. Strain off oak chips and dilute with aerated distilled water to
80 proof. Enjoy!


Equipment: Fermenting a mash or wash for distilling requires
the same type of equipment used for home brewing beer.
Sanitation practices will also be the same. You will need a large
stock pot, a fermentation bucket (preferably with an air lock), a
thermometer, a large straining bag (a clean white pillow case will
substitute), and at least one gallon jug (for aging). You will also
find it very helpful to obtain an alcoholmeter. An alcoholmeter is
very similar to a hydrometer in that it floats in a tall slim test jar. It
measures proof or alcohol percentage. Alcoholmeters can be
obtained mail order off the internet from the same shops that sell
turbo yeasts (just Google it).
Water: The quality of your water is important to making good
spirits. The water should be clean, chlorine free (chlorine can kill
yeast), ideally have some calcium content (but devoid of iron
content) and be approximately 5.5 to 6 on a PH scale (just
slightly acid). Chlorine can be removed by boiling but boiling
also removes the necessary oxygen that the yeast needs initially.
Boiled water will need aeration prior to pitching yeast.
PH can be measured and adjusted with supplies purchased from
a homebrew shop. If you want to proceed without actually
measuring the PH most municipal water supplies and bottled
store water have a neutral PH of 7 to 8. Add tsp of lemon juice
per gallon and then your water will likely be in the ballpark.
Calcium content can be increased by adding 1/8 tsp of gypsum
per gallon. Aeration can be accomplished by filling a sealable
container half full with your water and shaking it vigorously for 60
seconds. Aeration can also be done with an aquarium air pump
used with new clean tubing and a new clean bubbler stone.
Pump bubbles through your water, wash or mash for 20 minutes.
Yeast: Different yeasts can be used successfully. However avoid
using bread yeast. It will die at only 6-7% alcohol and will make

your spirits taste like a bakery roll. Turbo yeasts already include
the nutrients (no additional nutrients required) that aid in
fermentation and can be used with most any type of spirit. Gert
Strand Prestige turbo yeasts are perhaps the best known and are
of high quality. They also have specific yeasts for each of
whiskey, rum, and fruit fermentations. Generic distillers yeast
works well in any grain mash but requires added nutrients in
sugar type mashes. Wine yeast is often obtainable rather
economically (try Lalvin EC-118) and will also require added
nutrients in sugar mashes. Wine yeasts are sold in small sackets
so you will need one for every 2 gallons of wash. Homebrew
beer yeasts can be used for grain mashes but they are typically
not used very often for distilling purposes as they are limited to
about 9% alcohol fermentations and develop flavor profiles which
while desired in beer are usually avoided in whiskey. For yeast
nutrients you will find that homebrew and wine making shops
sell a variety. You will need one that includes both
vitamins/minerals and DAP (diammonium phosphate) or buy the
two separately. If nothing else is available to you at least throw a
few raisins into your wash to add nutrients.
Fermentation Temperature: Yeast works in a very narrow
temperature range. Most all yeasts will die at high temperatures
(above 85 F) and work very slowly (if at all) at low temperatures
(below 65 F). Keep your ferment around normal room
temperature (70 to 74 F) for optimum results. Be aware that the
fermentation process itself generates some heat particularly with
large batches. It may be necessary to keep your fermentation
vessel in a cooler place than your desired temperature especially
for the first few days.
Fermentation Time: Complete fermentation can take from 5
days to two weeks depending on the ingredients, the yeast being
used, and the temperature of the fermentation. Rigorous
fermentation will be obvious during the 2 nd and 3rd days after
tossing your yeast but will become much more subtle after that.
The best way to tell when fermentation has ceased is to use a
fermentation vessel with an air lock. That way you will see when
the air lock stops bubbling entirely. Generally speaking it is OK to
leave a wash sealed in the fermentation vessel for an extra day
or two if needed before you distill.

Recipes you may want to use with your Moonshine Still Pro still.

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