Trashy Apple Beer
One of the joys of one gallon brewing is the freedom you have to experiement without investing a lot of time or money. Trashy Apple is one of my truly improvisational brews.
One day I noticed that the bottom of one of my herb drying baskets had a layer of dried plants, pieces of bark, twigs and random stuff including dirt. Call me crazy but I wondered if I could make beer with all that stuff. It has flavor, right? So I dumped it out on a napkin and decided to create a 1 gallon beer recipe using this stuff.
For awhile now I was wondering how “white” I could make a beer. Normally beer is made with malted grains and/or brown sugar maybe hops, etc. I had a pound of rice syrup solids on my fermenting shelf and decide to use this as the primary fermenting ingredient. Rice syrup solids are often used at breweries to lighten beer. I wasn’t sure if it would impart any flavor but I know it was fermentable. I also added some palm sugar and agave syrup. I tossed in a tablespoon of dry malted wheat extract to help a little with head retention.
I also have a juicer and had just juiced some apples for another recipe. I was left with all the seeds, discarded pulp and peel. I decided to throw this into my experiement and “Trashy Apple” was born.
The entire boil only took 20 minutes. Seriously easy. I used yeast harvested from California Juniper Berries (the gift that keeps on giving.)
The result was subtley fragrant and effervescent. It feels like it is more of a champagne rather than a beer, but I’ll take it. It’s a perfect hot weather beverage. It’s also hard to believe this was made from something I might’ve tossed into the compost bin.
The apple flavor is definitely there but not dominant. I have made brews with a bunch of random plants before and I am definitely getting that flavor but it’s not bitter or “herbally.” Like I said, this could easily replace champagne.
Of course the uniqueness of this brew makes it virtually impossible to reproduce. That’s how I like it and that’s why I encourge you to make your own beer. You’ll never find anything like this in even the fanciest craft breweries or wine shops.
Bottom’s up, people.