Homemade Tepache

Time 10 minutes
Yields Makes 8 cups
Homemade Tepache

Pour the water into a large pitcher (at least 3-quart capacity) or blender and add the piloncillo. Stir or blend until the sugar dissolves.


Meanwhile, heat the canela sticks in a small skillet over medium-high heat until they smell fragrant and nutty and start to unfurl, about 3 minutes. Place the hot canela sticks in the pitcher along with the pineapple peels and cores and give everything a stir.


Drape a piece of cheesecloth over the top of the pitcher and secure it with a rubber band or kitchen twine. Set the pitcher out on your counter in an area that gets no sunshine or place it in a cupboard with plenty of ventilation. Let the brew sit for 2 days.


When ready to serve, use a spoon to skim off and discard any white scum floating on top of the liquid (there might not be any). Pour the brew through a fine strainer into another clean, large pitcher. Pour as much as you want to drink in a small saucepan and heat it over medium heat until hot. Pour the tepache into mugs and serve warm. Refrigerate any leftover tepache for up to 5 days.


For spiked tepache: Stir in 2 ounces mezcal or tequila to your mug of warm tepache.

Ben Mims is the cooking columnist for the Los Angeles Times. He has written three cookbooks and has worked as a food editor and recipe developer for several food media publications, such as Lucky Peach, Food & Wine, Saveur, Food Network and Buzzfeed/Tasty.
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