Tepache... what is it? Its a traditional Mexican beverage particularly common on the Central West Coast (Nayarit, Colima, Jalisco) as well as in Mexico City (where there are immigrants from all over), that is made by fermenting pineapple leftovers (rind, core etc.,).
I just tasted my first homemade batch & it is delicious. Its lightly fizzy like a spritzer, refreshing with hints of alcohol, pineapple & woodsy flavors.
It is a brilliant way to get full use of all the fruit, & it poses endless chowish possibilities... from a refreshing & exotic beverage, to a cool cocktail mixer, to a Gelatine ingredient (in the same vein as the Sherry Gelatines you find in Guadalajara), Sorbets, Coulis etc.,
The following link has the most widely available recipe:
> All the recipes in English call for using a whole pineapple. But the ones from Mexico tend to call only for the rind. I am pretty happy with the rind only results... very reminicent to what I used to have in Mexico.
> Most recipes call for only 48 hours of fermentation & they suggest adding a beer. My guess is that this is a modern commercial innovation designed to speed up the process & lower costs. However, Prehispanic peoples did not have the luxure of adding a beer so I am going to guess that they just let it ferment for a lot longer. I did 72 hours & I am very happy I did because all the Carbonation seem to have developed in the last 24 hours.
> This link is an abstract from Food Science and Technology International on a research study conducted in Mexico City that concluded consumers there preferred a Tepache that had undergone a secondary fermentation. http://fst.sagepub.com/cgi/content/ab...
> This link is on beer making & describes the secondary fermentation process. Based on this link I am going to guess that fermenting the Tepache for at least 1 week will provide the best results... particularly in eliminating some of the chemical like flavor notes that are produced in the primary fermentation. http://www.allaboutbeer.com/homebrew/...
> The receipes all tend to have a lot of water during the fermentation process... but if we reduce the quantity of water, we produce a more suitable anaerobic environment for the yeast to develop.
> Since it is November & we don't all have a consistely warm place in the sun to encourage the growth, I would suggest starting with lukewarm water & periodically microwaving your fermenting product just to get it up to about 100 degrees or so.
> The Cinammon & Cloves are too subtle in this recipe.. I would suggest crushing them just a little bit so that the flavor is a little bit more assertive.
> Finally, I used a Hawaiin pineapple instead of a Mexican... and it seemed to work just fine. Just make sure not to disenfect the rind in anyway or you will never get the yeast.