Thursday, August 27, 2009
Notes on wine making and shed building
Among other things the week has been (and still IS) FILLED with activity.
- Cooking is taking up time (made excellent Stafyli Gliko with my own little rose geranium twist - Thank you, Lulu at Mama's Taverna)
- Making BBQ sauce again today for the ribs.
- Still face more masses of figs.
And, yesterday I went to the doctor and had acupuncture on my knee - which totally worked!! Last night is the first time since March I have slept through the night without waking up at least three times saying, "Oww!" when I change positions. (A full nights sleep makes me a kinder and happier person, less likely to tear someones face off.)
Recipe for lemonade:
lemon (cut off ends and cut into eighths)
1/2 sugar (or splenda if you are on a diet like me)
1/2 cup water
Drop into blender and pulse til lemon is chopped fine but not too far gone
Strain into small pitcher.
Add cups water.
Very good. Very healthy.
Meanwhile, in only two days, T. has recreated a shed that had seen better days.
As we store all sort of things in there (ie: lawnmower, chainsaw, assorted olive gathering bits, bicycle parts and the odd chair including paint and plant stuff, and God knows what else) it seemed that it was time it became a bit more weather-proof (and a little less shabby?) again.
So. TA-DA! He did it all by himself except for the one piece on the side that I had to help him pick up and then hold, while he secured it to the metal skeleton of the shed. (Yes. He IS amazing.) One thing I learned that I didn't know before: they now make screws that have a tiny drill bit tip, so you can screw them through the pressboard and into a metal frame. Cool.
On another note, Monday we went in search of a wine making guru. After a few stops at likely places with several bored shrugs by younger desk keepers, we found a cava on the Paleocastritsa road and a marvelous man named Andreas, a great older guy, who explained to us what we had to do. When he recognised how hopeless we were he said to come back again JUST before the harvest so he could run through the explanation one last time! He shook his head and said he'd sell us what we needed then. He didn't advise us spending a lot of money til we knew what we were doing and if we liked doing it!!
I took notes (but in the car after we were done). We will see how close we were at understanding what he said, when he explains it the second time...
As near as I can read from my notes:For RED wine-
- Cut grapes (not vine)
- Remove grapes from stalks and put in squishing place
- Mash - however- (probably with feet)
- add sulfite powder (test for sugar)
- Leave to rest the squished grapes and STIR # TIMES A DAY (very important!!!)
- Strain in muslin cloth (note: find muslin cloth!)
- Test for sugar content (? T and I remember this in a different place)
- Siphon into Carboys (DON'T FILL as gasses expand)
- After fizzing stops insert special cork top for carboy (find top)
- Let sit til it stops bubbling- don't move containers about.
- Siphon in October (beware sludge at the bottom!)
- Siphon in December (still sludge)
- Siphon in January. (avoid sludge)
- Put in bottles and cork.
I am really hoping that the grapes ripen, and this comes together nicely before T. leaves for the US, though the other night when we went to a lovely evening hosted by one of our new neighbors in their garden, I discovered that when I mentioned the possibility, of perhaps needing assistance, several neighbors volunteered and will gladly pitch in and help out!
So. Sadly I must end this post as I hear the laundry calling my name. (one load down, three to go!) Busy busy days...