What is Moonshine Mash Made of It? – Moonshine mash is usually made with corn, sugar, yeast, and water and allowed to ferment for 5-10 days. A sugar wash can be made with just water and yeast and no grains to make moonshine or spirits.
Is moonshine mash safe to drink?
Methanol – A Deadly Byproduct – The fermentation process used to make moonshine produces alcohol in two forms: methanol and ethanol. Ethanol is the drinkable version. Methanol, known as wood alcohol, is a byproduct that’s toxic when large amounts end up in the finished product,
The distillation process that follows produces concentrated ethanol by boiling the fermented product. The problem moonshiners run into is ethanol has a boiling point of 173.1 degrees Fahrenheit while methanol’s boiling point is 148.5 degrees Fahrenheit. This means methanol evaporates at a faster rate than ethanol and can become concentrated.
When done correctly, it only forms in small amounts and is easily separated out and discarded. Without the right equipment, high concentrations of methanol can end up in the drink. What makes methanol so dangerous is the human body converts it to formaldehyde, an ingredient used to make embalming fluid.
What kind of mash is used for moonshine?
This blog provides information for educational purposes only. Read our complete summary for more info. March 29, 2013 Last updated March 14, 2023 The first step in making moonshine is to create a moonshine mash. This is an essential process that involves mixing moonshine ingredients to prepare for the fermentation process. The primary ingredients used in a moonshine mash are corn and barley. Though other ingredients are sometimes added to provide a distinctive flavor or to increase the proof.
- A mash made with corn, barley, and rye is perhaps the most popular moonshine recipe of all time.
- However, did you know that there are actually a lot of different moonshine mash recipes? In this article we’re going to give you our all time favorite moonshine mash recipe plus six additional mash recipes that we love.
Each varies in difficulty, cost, and time required to make. However, they all have one thing in common – they produce high-quality moonshine. Though before you make a moonshine mash at home, it’s essential to keep in mind that making moonshine mash is generally legal, but distilling alcohol at home without a federal fuel alcohol or distilled spirit plant permit (for commercial distillers) is illegal.
Therefore this article is for educational purposes only and we highly recommend that you read our legal summary for more information on the legalities of distillation before proceeding. Also, check this out if you’re looking for an educational article on the entire process for how to make moonshine,
It’s a comprehensive guide on making moonshine, from start to finish.
What mash does Jack Daniels use?
The original family recipe – Jack Daniel was known to be a man of refined taste. From his penchant for tailor-made suits, to the way he made his whiskey, the details mattered. And no detail was more important than his mash bill, the delicate mix of grains that help shape our whiskey’s flavor. Distillation begins by mixing these grains with the iron-free water from the Hollow. And just like a baker makes sour dough bread, by adding a little bit of starter yeast from a previous batch, we begin distillation by adding a little bit of our own starter mash for consistent, quality whiskey.
Using a bit of starter is why Jack Daniel’s is called a sour mash. The mash ferments for a full six days before being single distilled in a large copper still made to our exact specifications. And rather than double or triple-distillation, we vaporize and condense our whiskey only once. There’s no doubt Jack selected his mash because of its warm, balanced flavor.
And we distill the way we do to ensure that the whiskey still retains it.
How do I know if my moonshine is safe to drink?
Is It Safe to Drink Moonshine? With the drinking culture we have developed in the past few decades, liquor stores and bars alike have acquired a wide variety of specialty wines, beers, and spirits. Among the fastest-growing crazes is the resurgence of moonshine,
This formerly hush-hush, home-distilled drink of backwoods Appalachia is now legit! Its sale is being regulated by the US government in some states. So what exactly is moonshine? How come it is winning the hearts of several craft distillers despite being one of the most illicit drinks in the US? Is it really safe to drink moonshine? What is Moonshine? Moonshine, more popularly known as “hooch” or “homebrew” is made from a mash of corn, sugar, yeast, and water.
Unlike whiskey and bourbon, moonshine is not aged. It has a very high alcohol content, sometimes peaking at 190 proof. Traditionally, it is being produced in a homemade moonshine still and bottled in a mason jar. It was first introduced in the US in the 18 th century by Scottish and Irish immigrants.
- It quickly became a mainstay of Southern culture.
- As its popularity crested, the government became interested in taxation.
- People started making it in the middle of the night, under the light of the moon, hence its name.
- This is to hide the smoke that would run off the boiling liquor from local law enforcers.
Today, moonshine is widely available in some states and online for purchase. Why Do People Love Drinking Moonshine? While most people drink it straight from the jar, moonshine is excellent for mixing cocktails! It is basically whiskey, so you can combine it with Coke, ginger ale, lemonade, iced tea, and more! You can also infuse fresh apples, pineapples, peaches, blackberry, blueberry, cinnamon, or tangerine juice to this drink.
- The possibilities are endless! Is It Safe To Drink Moonshine? You probably have read stories about the dangers of moonshine and other illegally distilled drinks.
- Illegal moonshine remains to be dangerous because it is brewed in makeshift stills.
- The distillation process produces alcohol vapors, which are highly flammable.
The threat of explosion is too high, hence moonshine stills are better outdoors. Although most of the stills in operation today are all-copper variety, plenty of old vehicles are still around. These old handmade stills use lead-based solder to make connections.
- Unfortunately, lead can leach out of the radiators and connections.
- Lead is toxic to the body.
- Lead poisoning can cause memory loss, brain swelling, paralysis, and even death.
- In larger batches of distilled moonshine, tainting with methanol can occur.
- Methanol vaporizes at a lower temperature than ethanol, so it is the first liquid to be produced during the distillation process.
The larger the batch, the more ethanol. Methanol is highly poisonous. When metabolized in the body, it can cause serious side effects. With just a few ml, the dangerous potential of methanol can be undetectable. You will just get a hangover. However, 10 ml or more of methanol, even split up among drinks, can permanently damage your optic nerve and cause partial or complete blindness.
- The lethal dose is 30 ml.
- How Can You Tell Which Moonshine Is Safe To Drink? One way to test the purity of a moonshine liquor is to pour some in a metal spoon and set it on fire.
- If it burns with a blue flame, it is more likely safe to drink.
- If it produces a yellow or red flame, it is an indication of the presence of lead.
However, this spoon test does not detect the presence of methanol, which burns a colorless flame. With hundreds and thousands of moonshine being produced on a regular basis, chances are some of it will be tainted. When made properly, moonshine is simply a strong alcohol with a very hard taste or “kick” because it has not been aged.
Can you drink the heads of moonshine?
Heads – During distillation, the mash is heated in the still, causing the liquids to turn to vapor. Because alcohol evaporates at a lower temperature than water, the first thing that comes off the still is methanol, commonly referred to as the “foreshots” or the “heads.” Back when I worked for a moonshine brand, people would ask me, “Doesn’t moonshine make you go blind?” Like all tall tales, there is a bit of truth there.
The heads portion of the distillate comprises mostly methanol, and consuming methanol can lead to blindness and even death. So inexperienced whiskey makers can indeed create lethal cocktails — albeit unintentionally. We have even heard stories about Prohibition-era bootleggers and moonshiners purposefully sending batches of heads to bars that hadn’t paid for their last shipment.
The concentrated methanol killed every customer in the bar that day, sending a very serious message to the bar owner. In the world of whiskeys you can legally purchase, the heads section is always cut out.
Is it safe to eat the fruit in moonshine?
Even though Johnson family hooch isn’t made in copper stills out in the woods any more, the recipe lives on in the (now legally distributed) Midnight Moon. The family took a huge risk bootlegging corn alcohol before, during, and after prohibition, and the decades of hard work and fast driving paid off in the form of one of the most recognizable moonshine brands in the country.
Related: Spirit Education at Moonshine University Junior Johnson’s legacy extends far beyond crafting some of the finest corn whiskey around, though. A big part of distilling moonshine is transporting and selling it, or bootlegging, a role that Junior took over for his family when he was 14. Junior was never caught while driving, and only spent 11 months of a two-year sentence in prison when he was caught lighting a still the police had staked out in May of 1956.
Bootleg drivers in the ’40s became the pioneers of professional racing, and Junior Johnson was well known in the early NASCAR movement. A creative and daring racer, Junior is also credited with creating the bootleg turn, a sharp 180-degree turn designed to lose police cars in a chase.
Despite his car driving 22 miles per hour slower than the fastest cars in the race, Junior won the 1960 Daytona 500, one of the first documented uses of drafting in racing. Despite multiple distilleries making offers on the Johnson family recipe, Junior partnered with Piedmont Distillers in 2007 to bring his historic moonshine to life once again — this time legally.
Midnight Moon is now distilled in small batches in North Carolina, where Junior Johnson can still get involved from time to time. Midnight Moon is available in its classic clear form, or in one of six infused flavors: blackberry, blueberry, cherry, cranberry, and strawberry, all of which are made with the real fruit included in the jar. The apple pie flavor, for instance, is made with real apple juice and includes a stick of cinnamon inside for an added kick. The strawberry infused Midnight Moon has a quiet sweetness to it, but it doesn’t distract from the huge taste of real fruit. The vibrant red and pink spirit goes down deceptively smooth, considering that the infused varieties are bottled at 100 proof.
- Serving it chilled brings out the fruit flavors and corn sweetness even more, but it’s great in a glass of lemonade, too.
- By the time the jar hits the shelves, the blueberry infused Midnight Moon has turned the clear liquid a deep, opaque purple.
- The mass of blueberries at the bottom of the jar can only be seen by tilting the glass so their dark lines can be seen moving around.
The result is a drink that’s smooth and just a little tart, with the corn alcohol coming a bit more to the front than in the strawberry and apple pie infusions. The apple pie flavor is a bit different than the other infused flavors. Rather than dropping a pile of fruit into the bottom, the classic Midnight Moon is mixed with real apple juice and cinnamon. The result is a cocktail in a jar, and while Midnight Moon offers up a number of simple recipes to go along with each flavor, the apple pie is sweet, warm, and tastes great on the rocks or with a splash of ginger ale.