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Tepache, an easy Homemade Pineapple Brew

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During there hot summer days, you need a cold drink to refresh yourself, and one of the popular ways to quench your thirst in Mexico is by drinking “Aguas Frescas” . The drinks are prepared with sugar, grains, and the pulp of fruits. The flavors range from Papaya, Watermelon, Cantaloupe, Lemon, Orange, Banana, Tepache, Huapilla, Mango, regional plums, horchata, jamaica,  cucumbers, well, the list goes on and on. But Tepache  is a special drink because you need to wait a few days to actually drink it. Fermentation is the reason behind the waiting period, since you have to allow the sugar and fruit to ferment. The result is a mild homemade brew that can become alcoholic if you let it ferment for a few more days before it becomes vinegar.
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A Tepache Drink Vendor in Mexico City,
All Rights Reserved Photo used with permission by owner  Mototli
Here’s an easy and simple recipe. Please see notes.
INGREDIENTS
  • 1 Ripe Pinapple, or just the peels
  • 1 cup of Piloncillo cut in pieces, or use organic sugar
  • 1 stick of cinnamon**
  • 3 cloves**
  • 2 quarts of filtered water
NOTES:
*The quantities in this recipe can be duplicated for a larger amount of Tepache.
** As I mention above, in my hometown and in many homes in Mexico, cooks just prepare the Tepache using only the pineapple peels, water and sugar, but the cinnamon stick and cloves enhance the flavor.
*** This drink used to be fermented in a clay pot but nowadays not everyone has one of those pots. Any glass pitcher does a great job too.

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DIRECTIONS:
1. Rinse the pineapple and using a sharp knife to cut the peel and slice or chop the pineapple pulp. You are not using all the pineapple  unless you have a large glass container to make a bigger batch.
2. In a large glass pitcher, place the pineapple peels, the piloncillo or sugar, cinnamon stick, cloves and the 2 quarts of water.
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3. Cover the pitcher or glass container with a cheese cloth or a plastic wrap in a loose manner that allows the brew to breath. Place this container in your counter top and let it sit for 24 for hours. (If you do not have A/C and live in a very hot place, then check after 12 hrs.) With a wooden spoon, remove the white foam that has formed on top of the liquid. Loosely cover again an let rest for another 24 to 36 hrs., DO NOT let it ferment longer unless you need pineapple vinegar to make pickled chipotle peppers.
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4. And now for the fun part, strain the liquid of your pitcher and place in another pitcher with lots of ice. Taste for sweetness in case it needs more sugar for your taste. If you prefer a milder version, add 1 cup of the fermented pineapple water to 1 quarter of water as it shows in the pictures above. Yes, I drink the light version as you can see.
If you are not drinking or using all the fermented pineapple water after strained, place in a glass container in your refrigerator to enjoy later on.

Have you tried Tepache?




24 comments:

  1. Hi Mely. Good to see you. I do make agua frescas with whatever fruits I have. This does sound very interesting. Looks good too. Hope all is well with you. I have a new blog now:

    http://shininglife1.blogspot.com/

    Hope you follow me here too. There were too many spammer's on my other. It still exists but is closed for now. Take care of yourself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Gloria,

      Thanks for stopping by. I will sure go an visit your new blog.

      Mely

      Delete
  2. I used to buy this in Tijuana with a vendor that specialized in nothing but tepache. he opened his back yard every evening to sell barrels and barrels of this drink. It is very refreshing in a hot day with lots of ice. If the brew is to strong you can get a little tipsy, but it's a fun and decisions drink.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi there Prieta,
      There reason why I add water to mine is because sometimes it is a little strong to my taste, but now for the rest of the family.

      It is really tasty drink, indeed.

      Mely

      Delete
  3. I think I've tried a version of it. There was a bar in Santa Fe that used to put pineapple chunks, piloncillo, and a few other things into a glass jar and keep it on the bar, unrefrigerated, for several days. Then, they'd take some of that and mix it together with club soda and vodka. It was delicious. I think I'll try your version soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You know some people add beer or rum to it. And with vodka must be a real treat.

      Mely

      Delete
  4. Mely! yo la piña me la como y el tepache lo hago con la cáscara... que curioso que pongas la piña


    Besos

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  5. adorable jug of tepache, will make one feel sunnier with each sip :-)

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  6. I've never heard of this, but it sure does sound good! My hubby and I usually make our own Kahlua and Bailey's... I think this would be fun to try!

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  7. I used a thin cloth (cotton, I think) to cover it completely. After a few hours, or was it ~10, there was a little foam. At 24, no foam. Is this not going right for me?

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    Replies
    1. Hello Sam,

      It will form some foam or white foam, it also depends in how cold or warm is the room where the brew is resting.
      After 2 days it will be ready. Place in the fridge to stop (or slow) the process. Most people will add ice and drink it.

      If you still see something weird going on with your brew, please let me know.

      Delete
    2. Day two here. Still no foam. I do live in the Pacific Northwest (San Juan Islands) and the average temp in my house is 68 currently. I take it that that temp might slow things down a bit.

      Delete
  8. Qué delicia amiga, yo lo preparé por primera vez hace poco y quedó riquísimo!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Gostria si existe la posibilidad de embotellar y almacenar en el refrigerador por varios días. Una bebida fermentada si embotellada?
    Gracias


    Lo sentimos tranlate Google Español

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Leonardipc,

      You can store the drink in the refrigerator for some days, but its alcohol content increases, slowly but it does. To reduce or remove the alcohol content it has to be distilled.

      I store it in the refrigerator for 2 or 3 days only.

      Saludos!

      Delete
  10. It's been a day and I don't have any foam at all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Gene,

      The lower temperatures on your area will slow the fermentation process. Be patience it will work. :)

      Delete
  11. Someone wondered if you could do this with pineapple

    ReplyDelete
  12. Someone asked bout this cool......got the pineapple.

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  13. We made this several times in Guatemala, where a member of our party with a weak stomach (gut) was very sick and needed probiotics. Of course I could not bring my water kefir cultures across the border, and we could not find salt without fluoride in it, so salt fermentations didn't succeed. I was so grateful to find your recipe! We never had more than a few bubbles on top; no foam. After 24 hours it was ready to drink, but bottled overnight in the fridge it built up very nice carbonation.

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    Replies
    1. Adding to clarify that in Guatemala we made this with white sugar and it was essentially sparkly pineapple juice. Here at home I just finished a batch with panela. It adds a much stronger, darker flavor, and I prefer it diluted. Much more white came to the top, something between foam and scum, and it was clearly a mold of some type. I just scraped most of it off and didn't worry about it. So far, so good!

      Delete
    2. Hello Lynn,

      Thanks for your comments, I also like the flavor using panela and then dilute the drink a little.

      Saludos!

      Delete
  14. I did this a couple of weeks ago, I love it! Do you have any other recipes for summer drinks or Agua Frescas? I heard there is another drink called Tejunio made from masa dough? Do you know of this recipe?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Michefle,

      Here is the link for 3 Aguas frescas.
      http://www.mexicoinmykitchen.com/2011/08/aguas-frescas-mexican-fruit-drinks.html

      I will try to post the Tejuino recipe this summer.

      Delete

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