Moonshine, also known as white lightning, hooch, or white whiskey, is a homemade or illicitly produced spirit, typically made from corn mash or grain mash. It gets its name from the fact that it was often produced at night by the light of the moon to avoid detection by authorities.
While moonshine production is illegal in many countries, it has a long history and cultural significance in the United States, particularly in the Appalachian region. It was a way for people to make their liquor during Prohibition when the production, sale, and transportation of alcohol were prohibited.
Despite its illegal status, moonshine has gained a certain level of notoriety and has even made its way into mainstream culture, with some distilleries producing legal versions of the spirit.
If you’re interested in making your moonshine, here’s a basic recipe and instructions:
- 8 pounds of cornmeal
- 8 gallons of water
- 16 pounds of sugar
- Two packets of yeast (or 1/2 cup of homemade yeast)
- In a large pot, mix the cornmeal and water. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to low, stirring constantly.
- After about 20 minutes, the mixture should start to thicken. At this point, add the sugar and continue to stir until it is fully dissolved.
- Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature, then transfer it to a sizeable fermenting container (such as a food-grade plastic bucket or glass jar).
- Add the yeast to the mixture and stir well. Cover the container with a cloth or plastic wrap and secure it with a rubber band.
- Allow the mixture to ferment for at least a week, stirring it daily. The longer it ferments, the stronger the final product will be.
- Once the fermentation process is complete, it’s time to distill the moonshine. To do this, you’ll need a still. You can purchase a still or build your own using a large pot, a copper coil, and some essential equipment.
- Fill the pot with the fermented mixture and heat it over a low flame. As the mixture begins to boil, the alcohol will vaporize and travel through the copper coil.
- Collect the vapor in a separate container and allow it to cool. It will turn back into a liquid, your homemade moonshine, as it cools.
- Strain the moonshine through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to remove any solids.
- Transfer the moonshine to a clean container (such as a mason jar) and seal it tightly. Store it in a cool, dark place until you’re ready to enjoy it.
Note: It’s important to note that moonshine production is illegal in many countries and can be dangerous if not done correctly. If you do decide to try making your own, be sure to use caution and follow all safety guidelines.
For entertainment and educational purposes only.