Sunday, October 02, 2005

Chicha recipe

Traditional way to make corn beer - how to make the mash needed for alchohol distillation, without needing to add lye in order to turn the starch into sugar.

RESIST PROHIBITION! - Exotic Homebrew Recipes


"Chicha" is beer made from corn. Any variety (or several varieties) of corn can be used - the color of the corn will impact the color of the beer. Traditionally, the chicha brewing process was begun by grinding the selected corn into meal, moistening the meal slightly with water, then rolling it into a ball. The meal balls were then placed in the mouth and worked with the tongue until completely saturated with saliva. This is the method chicha brewers traditionally used to convert the starches in the corn into fermentable sugars. After being worked in the mouth, the meal balls were then allowed to dry in the sun. To make the chicha, the meal balls are added to unmalted corn meal in a ratio of 2-to-1. Occasionally, pulp from the local squash or prickly pear cactus fruit was added. Finally, the mixture is boiled in a complex boiling process before being transferred to clay pots for spontaneous fermentation.

"Tesguino" is chicha made from malted maize rather than maize made from saliva-converted corn meal. Tesguino is brewed throughout Mexico and South America. To germinate corn, soak 2 pounds of corn in cold water for 24 hours, then transfer it to a colander for germination. Spray cold water on the corn and turn it in the colander twice a day to prevent it from drying out or getting moldy. Within 5 days, the corn should have germinated to the point that sprouts have reached 2 inches in length. When they do, remove the corn from the colander and allow it to dry in the sun or in the oven on its lowest setting. The following is a recipe for tesguino as brewed by the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico.


* 8 quarts water
* 1 pound germinated corn
* 2 cups brown sugar
* 8 whole allspice or cloves
* ale yeast


1. Crush the corn coarsely then place it in the brewpot with the water and let it sit for 1 hour.

2. Bring the wort to a boil, then add the sugar.

3. Reduce the heat and allow the wort to simmer for 3 hours stirring regularly.

4. Add the spices at the and of the boil and allow the wort to sit for 1 hour.

5. Strain the wort into a fermenter once cool and pitch the yeast.

6. Ferment at 65º-70ºF for 5 days, then rack to a secondary and allow to ferment for 2 more weeks.

7. Bottle with 1 teaspoon corn sugar per bottle for priming and allow to condition for 2 weeks before drinking.

One would take the brew after the first 5 days or so, then distill the alcohol from this, in theory. Needs further research.

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