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While the negative impact of lockdown in South Africa took its toll on the nation, something else fun and positive was afoot; refreshed local enthusiasm for making homemade pineapple beer. Pineapple beer is a fruity delight – somewhat punch-esque – and has always been a firm South African favourite.

Perhaps you remember granny and gramps pouring you an icy cold pineapple beer and savouring every sip, feeling so grown-up by the fact that you were consuming some of the “adult’s juice”. Don’t worry…pineapple beer brewed for 3 days or less doesn’t really have effective alcohol content and is perfectly safe for kids. Phew! If you are making pineapple beer with a kick, be prepared to “brew” it for 5 days or more and add more sugar – that’s the secret! Then of course, there’s the little trick of re-fermenting, but we will get to that later.

How to Make Pineapple Beer

Pineapple beer is not just a lockdown remedy for a heady buzz, but also a refreshing summer time alternative to punch. And with the summer months just around the corner, a good pineapple beer recipe won’t hurt. Below is a quick and easy recipe for making pineapple beer. Don’t rush it – if you have the time to do it properly, you will end up with a pineapple beer that tastes just as good as it is effective.

Pineapple Beer Recipe

This pineapple beer recipe makes 20 to 24 glasses in the end.

What you need:

  • 2 pineapples – chop the leaves off but leave the peel on (rinse the pineapples before chopping them).
  • 5 apples – this is not essential, but really does give the beer a nice flavour.
  • 6 litres of lukewarm water (that’s 24 cups).
  • 5 cups of white sugar – don’t skimp on this as the sugar and yeast reacting is what adds alcohol content to the beer.
  • 1 cup of plump raisins (bruise them slightly, before adding them).
  • 2 and ½ teaspoons of instant dry yeast.
  • 1 big container or bucket (must hold at least 7 litres – no lid required).
  • 1 towel large enough to drape over the bucket/container (as a makeshift lid).

What to do:

  • Make sure that your container or bucket is very clean. Scrub it out with dishwashing liquid and even rinse it a few times with a touch of weak bleach and water solution. Dry the container thoroughly before using it. Contamination could cause your beer to go bad, so this is an important part of the process.
  • Chop the pineapples up roughly without removing the skin. Big and small chunks are a good idea. Add them to the bucket/container.
  • Grate the apples and discard the cores. Add them to the bucket/container too.
  • Add the 5 cups of white sugar to the bucket/container.
  • Add the 1 cup of raisins and then pour in the 24 cups of lukewarm water.
  • Stir the mixture thoroughly until all the gathered sugar in the bottom of the bucket seems dissolved.
  • Let the mixture settle and be still, before taking the next step.
  • Sprinkle the yeast over the top of the fruit layer which will now be floating at the top of the water. Sprinkle it evenly and allow the mixture to stand for a few minutes (2 minutes should be enough).
  • Stir the mixture thoroughly to ensure that the yeast is well mixed in.
  • Find a warm spot in the house to place the bucket/container and cover the top with a towel.
  • Simply let the mixture stand for 5 days, stirring it gently twice per day. When stirring the mixture, simply push the fruit below the surface to unsettle it and whirl your spoon through it twice and then cover it up again. Be as gentle as possible and always use a clean spoon.

What to do after 5 days:

  • When 5 days have passed, the fruit should still be floating at the top of the liquid.
  • Give the mixture a good stir.
  • Using a strainer, scoop the fruit from the top of the liquid and discard it in a plastic bag.
  • You can strain the liquid through a clean kitchen towel into a bowl or jug and then funnel it into bottles (plastic bottles).
  • Let the bottles stand open for about an hour and then cap them. Screw the caps on as tight as possible.
  • Transfer the beer bottles to a cupboard in a warm part of the house. Let them stand for a further 3 to 4 days. This is the “re-fermentation” stage.
  • After the 3 to 4 days has passed, transfer the bottles to the fridge. As soon as you chill your pineapple beer, the fermentation processes is ceased and the alcohol content becomes stable.

Just How Alcoholic is Homemade Pineapple Beer?

If you are worried about creating a diabolical beer for the family, don’t worry too much. If you follow the recipe carefully and don’t leave the beer to stand too long, you should expect an alcohol content of around 3.5% to 4.5%. If you would prefer a non-alcoholic pineapple beer or a punch for summer, don’t let the brewing phase last longer than 3 days and completely skip the re-fermentation stage. After day 3, simply bottle and chill the beer and you will have a refreshing, fruity, summer punch – alcohol free.

Why Don’t You Put a Lid on the Pineapple Beer Bucket/Container?

Placing a lid firmly on the pineapple beer container or bucket will merely lead to the liquid fermenting early on. It might even form a mouldy layer on the top or turn sour. It is important for the beer to “breathe” during the process.

FinGlobal: Your tax and financial emigration specialists

At FinGlobal, we want nothing more than for every South African expat to enjoy a taste of back home during their “new” summer months. This pineapple beer recipe should do just that! Of course, we want more than just a delicious summer beer or punch for you to enjoy. We also want to assist you with your financial emigration and tax emigration when leaving SA shores. We have helped thousands of South Africans living abroad and with 10 years of experience in the field, we firmly believe that we are the best team to assist you. Avoid the red tape and enjoy an emigration process that is smooth and hassle free with the help of FinGlobal. Simply contact us for further assistance. Give us a call or send us an email today.