Parsley wine In Europe there is a famous comic called Asterix and Obelix. A bunch of invincible warriors from Gaul who fight the Roman conquerers. The comic also features a bard called Cacofonix who sings so out of tune that the village people put parsley in their ears against the noise. Well take the parsley out, we are going to make wine from it. Parsley wine will no doubt raise some eyebrows. Well I was, to say the least, also surprised when I first heard about it. Who in Toutatis name gets the idea to make wine from Parsley. Then last years Whitsun weekend we had a meeting of the members of the bibere.com forum. Forum member Herman brought some bottles Parsley wine. We were all pleasantly surpised by this lovely wine. So on our way home Els and I visited some friends. And guess what: they had a garden full of Parsley. We immediately started harvesting !!! Parsley can be kept for a short while in the refridgerator. In the freezer it can be kept longer but it will looses flavor over time. Best is to process the parsley immediately after harvesting.
Parsley is a herb and there are two kinds of parsley. First there is the familiar curly leaf parsley and then there is the Italian leaf also called flat leaf Parsley. The flat leaf parsley contains more ethereal oils and has therfore more flavor. As well the leaves as the stems can be consumed. To harves parsley you just cut the stems with scissors. Parsley can be harvested the whole year through. Cleaning Start with cleaning the parsley. Fresh parsley will contain sand and insects. Rinse thorough with cold water
The recipe Herman found a recipe on the internet. I tweaked it to my liking. I will give you here my on recipe. The original recipe started with 320 gram leaf parsley. If you can lay your hands on leaf parsley then stay with this amount.
I had 600 gram curly parsley and I used it all. Another thing was that the original recipe added tap water. I thought the wine could use some more body. A way to add body to your wine is to add raisins or bananas. However I took the easy way out.
In the supermarket I bought 4 packs of 1,5 liter grape-lemon juice. This juice is available in the Plus supermarkets and at Aldi's. If you can not get this juice you can use white-grape juice.
From 1 of these packs I used 1 liter juice to make a yeast starter following my starter-recipe which you can find by clicking here. The remaining half liter juice was consumed.
I boiled my 600 gram parsley in the remaining 4,5 liter juice. When the soup was boiling I added 1400 gram sugar and 2 teaspoons citric acid. Then when the soup was cooling down I added 1 teaspoon nutrient, and when further cooled down 1 teaspoon pectic enzymes and 2 teaspoons tannine. The parsley soup was then poured in a primary and covered with a cheesecloth. Next day the yeast-starter was added. After 3 days the must was sieved in a bucketsieve and put in a 10 liter secondary. If you want to learn how to make a bucket sieve: click here. In the meantime 700 gram sugar was boiled in half a liter water. When the sugarwater had cooled down to about 20 degrees Celsius it was added to the carboy. The carboy was then filled up with cold water. Fermentation that was vigorous in the primary almost immediately took off again. A few weeks later when fermentation had ceased the wine was racked into another carboy and again filled up with water.
After just 3 months the wine was crystal clear and bottled.
The label pays hommage to the bard of the Gauls. The wine itself is soft and smooth and reminds me of Liebfraumilch. There is no trace of parsley flavor left in the wine. If I can get any more parsley I will surely make this wine again. Highly recommended.
Ingredients for 10 liter: - 600 gram curly parsley or 320 gram leaf (Italian) parsley - 3 packs of 1,5 liter grape-lemon juice or 4,5 liter grape juice - 2100 gram sugar - 2 teaspoons tannine - 2 teaspoon citric acid - 1 teaspoon yeast nutrient - 1 teaspoon pectic enzyme - Yeast starter 1 liter Links: The official Asterix and Obelix website How to make a yeast starter How to build a bucket sieve The website from Els This was the last story before we go on holliday. First we will stay a week in Zeeland where els has an exposition of her work in the lovely town Renesse. After that we will go for some weeks to France. I wish you all a nice summer holliday. Enjoy the season and enjoy some good wines.
Luc Volders Copyright 2009 No part of this publication and pictures may be reproduced in any form (printed text, web-pages, weblogs or forums) without written permission of the author.
making wine from parsley