Serious Distilling with Brewcraft, Still Spirits and Grainfather – How to Make Flavoring Essences

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Serious Distilling with Brewcraft, Still Spirits and Grainfather - How to Make Flavoring Essences
Recipe type: Home Distilling
In our previous distilling episode we looked at the range of Still Spirits essences used to create commercial grade liquor products. Today we're going to get creative and look at how to make these essences from scratch, and flavor the high quality alcohol batch from the Still Spirits T500 reflux distiller. This technique can be used to extract essence from any liquid, including fruit juices, herb infusions, coffee, tea and spice infusions. Today we're going to use coffee to make an amazing coffee essence.
  • 800ml Strong espresso
  • 20g Gelatin
  • 5ml Vanilla extract
To Make "Kahlua" Coffee liqueur
  • 250g Corn syrup
  1. To start, we need to brew 4 double shots of really strong espresso.
  2. Pour these into a large heat proof jug.... the total volume will bee 800ml.
  3. Pour the gelatin into the hot espresso and stir it thoroughly until dissolved. You can use either bovine or plant based gelatin.
  4. Add the vanilla extract and stir this in.
  5. Allow the mixture to cool and transfer it to your freezer for a full 24 hours.
  6. The following day, place a colander over a large bowl. Line the colander with cheese cloth, or use a new kitchen wipe as I am doing.
  7. Remove the frozen coffee mixture from the freezer. Dip the bottom of the jug in a sink of hot water and turn the frozen block out into the colander.
  8. Allow this to stand and drip for a few hours. Once the block is soft and spongy, lift the edges of the cloth and squeeze out any remaining liquid trapped in the gelatin.
  9. The yield from 800ml of espresso will be 500ml.
  10. This is the essence. From this point you can reduce and sweeten the essence, or use it as is.
To Use it As Is
  1. Dilute 375ml alcohol to 40% ABV.
  2. Mix 375ml of the coffee essence with the alcohol.
  3. Bottle the alcohol in suitable bottles and you're done.
To Make Kahlua-Style Coffee Liqueur
  1. Dilute 250ml of alcohol to 60% ABV.
  2. Place 500ml essence in a small saucepan, bring it to a simmer and allow to continue until it has reduced by 50%
  3. Combine the alcohol and reduced essence with 250g of corn syrup. Mix thoroughly to combine.
  4. Bottle the liqueur in suitable bottles and you're done!!!


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