If the first day of the year is any portent, 2014 will be dark and miserable. Just at this moment I am in a 'glass half empty' mood. My bassoon practice has gone badly and I can better understand why Claire becomes down when her viola has not done what she desired. At Airedale Symphony Orchestra we are playing The Polotsvian Dances and I can't play it quickly enough. And try as I might Morning from The Peer Gynt Suite refuses to stay in tune. Oh well. At least I began my Lemon and Lime Wine today. This is a brand new flavour and ticks off yet another letter from my wine alphabet.
Before Christmas I saw that Noshis was selling 11 lemons for a pound. The limes were also good value at five for a pound. Never one to miss a bargain, I snapped them up and used all the lemons and four of the limes for this wine.
I began by thinly peeling five of the lemons and two limes, trying to avoid the pith. The peel is now in a bowl and covered with a pint of boiling water and a layer of clingfilm. I then squeezed all fruit, which produced a pint of juice, and put this together with the citrus detritus collected in the squeezer into my bucket. I added three pounds of sugar and five and a half pints of boiling water. My current worry is that the lemons were all really rather small (hence the price) and this may result in a bland wine.
On Thursday morning, before my first day back at work following the Christmas break, I added the yeast, a teaspoon each of pectolase and nutrient, and the water which had covered the peel. We went to Newcastle on Friday for the weekend so the wine did not get its twice-daily stir.
I put the liquid into its demijohn on our return - the evening of Sunday 5th January, sieving out any solid (mainly pips). Rather than a bright lemony-yellow hoped for, the wine is biege.