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Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Lemon Balm Beer

The more I learn about Lemon Balm, the more marvellous it becomes. I usually brew up a cup of lemon balm tea when I feel the need (which is quite often), during the spring and summer months when it grows rampantly in our back garden. It is renound for its anti-anxiety and stress relieving properties, but has also proven to improve mental performance and mood. This information is backed up with hard scientific evidence and it is being investigated as a treatment for Alzheimers. It is also antibacterial and antiviral and is thought to calm muscle tissue.
With all this in mind and alot of the stuff going in the garden I decided to try making some beer, by adapting a Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe for nettle beer. First I picked a decent bunch of Lemon Balm:
Lemon Balm

Next I chopped it up with some scissors and added it to a large pan with about 3 pints of water. I brought the mixture to the boil for a few minutes, then turned off the heat and allowed it to infuse for about 45 minutes.

Let it brew.
Next I used a seive and spoon to fish out the leaves to leave a clear solution.

Take the leaves out now.

Then I added 210g of caster sugar, 8g cream of tartar,1 tablespoon orange juice,1tablespoon lemon juice.

the other ingredients.

Once the mixture had cooled down to roughly body temperature I added about 1g of ordinary baking yeast. I put the pan with its lid on in our airing cupboard, above the hot water tank, which was the only place I could think of that was reasonably warm, most of the time. It will stay there for about 3 days, then I will bottle it and wait another few days before sampling it.

Cosy.

I shall report back on the quality of what must surely be the ultimate health drink! For me anyway.

3 comments:

  1. very interesting - I too have it growing rampantly in my herb patch and use it with mint for a refreshing tea, but beer...I wait with excitment to hear the results

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  2. Looking forward to hearing how the brew turns out. A bit like a ginger beer plant, I suppose.

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  3. If your nettle beer is anything to go by it'll be worth the wait. Bring on the weekend!

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