Tepache is a light, refreshing beverage prepared and consumed throughout Mexico. In the past, tepache was prepared from maize, but nowadays various fruits such as pineapple, apple and orange are used. The pulp and juice of the fruit are allowed to ferment for one or two days in water with some added brown sugar. The mixture is contained in a lidless wooden barrel called a ‘tepachera’, which is covered with cheese cloth. After a day or two, the tepache is a sweet and refreshing beverage. If fermentation is allowed to proceed longer, it turns into an alcoholic beverage and later into vinegar. The microorganisms associated with the product include Bacillus subtilis, B. graveolus and the yeasts, Torulopsis insconspicna, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Candida queretana (Aidoo, 1986).
Caution - Homemade mead, beer, coffees, wines, and liqueurs do not have the shelf life of commercial brands! In many instances the use of extracts is preffered instead of cooking and breaking down fruits - to expedite the ageing process and prevent acidity or fruit sedimentation (this also sometimes prevents the natural flavours to permeate the liqueur)! Sugars, coffee, chocolates, and fruits added with water can introduce contaminants to liqueurs so refrigerate upon opening, serve and enjoy as soon as possible!
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