Now boarding for the Mayan country. Although Mezcal is the star on the counters of Mexican bars, another, lesser-known drink is also enjoying a small success. Coming straight from Mexico, Tepache is refreshing, healthy and zero waste. Let’s discover it.
A Natural Fermented Drink
• Of pre-Columbian origin, Tepache was originally made from corn by the Nahuas (the main Amerindian group in Mexico). Affordable, this drink is today prepared with pineapple peel and rind. It is easily found on the streets of Mexico City and other cities in the country.
• Thirst-quenching, Tepache can be enjoyed endlessly in summer in the shade of a sombrero. This drink can be sparkling, depending on the fermentation time.
• Tepache is indeed a natural fermented drink. Like other fermented drinks, it is obtained from yeast and bacteria present on the pineapple rind. The sugar added to the mixture is quickly consumed during the fermentation reaction. Depending on the level of fermentation, the Tepache takes on the flavour of pineapple iced tea or pineapple cider. The fermentation process affects the alcohol content in the mixture.
A Healthy Drink
• Tepache, just like Kefir or Kombucha (other fermented drinks) is in fact very low in sugar. Sugar is eliminated during the fermentation process. The longer the fermentation time, the less the sugar. It is therefore a great alternative to sodas and can be consumed without moderation (the non-alcoholic version that is).
• In addition, the bacteria and yeast that make it up are full of probiotics and vitamins. Tepache is good for us and the planet too.
• This Mexican specialty is an excellent zero waste option. The flesh of the pineapple can be eaten as is, cut into cubes, whilst the peel is transformed into a drink with or without alcohol. The leaves of the pineapple can be used to complement the cocktail.
How to get a good Tepache
• To make a good Tepache, the choice of fruit is the deciding factor. So be sure to go organic. The pineapple must be heavy and fragrant. To know if the pineapple is ripe to the core, you should be able to pull off one of its leaves easily, without force. Bright green leaves are also a sign of maturity.
• Another ingredient in Tepache is water. It must be of good quality and more importantly, non-chlorinated. Tap water can be used if it has been filtered in a decanter or left to stand for several hours in an open container. Chlorine kills bacteria and stops the fermentation process.
• For 2 litres of Tepache:
- 1 pineapple, preferably organic
- 200 g brown sugar
- 2 litres of non-chlorinated water (filtered or mineral)
- 1 stick of cinnamon
- 1 large 3-litre glass jar with a rubber seal
- Peel the pineapple, keeping one or two centimetres of flesh with the skin.
Cut the skin into small strips and immerse them in the jar.
- In a bowl, dissolve the brown sugar in non-chlorinated water.
Pour into the jar and add the cinnamon stick. Leave to ferment for up to 5 days, taking care to stir the jar once a day.
- To know if the fermentation has begun, a fine foam should be visible on the surface.
- To make the drink sparkling, filter the mixture and pour it into rubber-sealed glass bottles. Leave to ferment for 24 hours at room temperature and then in the refrigerator.
- Enjoy chilled with ice cubes.
• To enhance your homemade Tepache, there’s nothing quite like white tequila. Mix 20 cl of Tepache with 3 cl of white tequila and 1.5 cl of sugar syrup. Simple and delicious!