Stinging Nettle Beer
Be warned; this recipe takes a year to age and it is TART. Boozy but very very tart.
5 kg young nettle leaves
4 litres of water + 1/2cup boiled water cooled to about 25°C
Fresh squeezed juice from 2 lemons and 2 oranges
1 cup of brown sugar
100g cream of tartar
1 sachet of wine yeast
(For a more bitter beer add a large dandelion root)
(For a more spicy beer add a large ginger root)
Before hops were widely used in the 17th century all sorts of plants were used to make beer including nettles. Not only is nettle beer inexpensive to make, it is believed to help alleviate rheumatic pain, gout and asthma.
Making the wort:
Boil nettle leaves (and dandelion root (or) ginger root) in 4 litres of water for 30 minutes.
Strain off the nettles (squeeze excess liquid) and save the liquid.
Add lemon and orange juice, brown sugar and cream of tartar to the liquid.
Pour mixture into a sterile container (fermenter) with lid.
Cool to 20-27°C overnight.
Sprinkle yeast into 1/2 cup of boiled water that has cooled down and wait for it to sink. Gently stir yeast and gently pour evenly into fermenter.
Place lid on fermentation pail and wait 3-5days, or until foam has collapsed. For proper fermentation keep beer at a constant temperature between 20-27°C.