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06/01/2009

Preparation of the tools and materials for making an Umeshu

Preservation container
It is necessary to use an acid-proof material. When you use metal tools, there is a possibility that metal may hurt with the acid of ume. If you finished using a tool, let's wash it with water as soon as possible. The preservation container and cooking tool to be used should be washed with water finely. If it be possible, it should be sterilized with boiling water. After drying completely, it should be used. Since a glass preservation container is impossible to disinfect with boiling water, it should be washed with clean water, and dry completely before using. After that, a glass preservation container should be wiped with alcohol (or white distilled liquor of 35 degrees) for sterilizing.

The degree of ripeness of the ume to be used
It seems that the blue thing harvested until the middle of June is good. Relation between the material to prepare and its quantity of ume.
1) Ume ; 1kg Dscf7317_2
I bought it at the market 610yen per 1kg. (June 6th)
This Ume was harvested in Saitama Prefecture.
At the store, the Nankou-Ume (a brand of Ume) harvested in Wakayama Prefecture was also sold, but I bought a cheaper one. The Nankou-Ume is normally for the Umeboshi, it must be enough for you to use the standard Ume.

2) Crystal sugar ; 200gr ~ 500grCrystal_sugar_2
When quantity of crystal sugar is set to 200gr, it becomes a clean taste. The quantity of crystal sugar is adjusted by your liking.
I bought it 420yen (net.1kg). (June 6th)

3) White distilled liquor of 35 degrees (white distilled liquor) ; 1.8 Litter

I bought it 1365yen. (June 6th)
Dscf7315

4) Preservation container ;
Bottle in the case of the above-mentioned quantity, it is depend on the size of an ume, or the quantity of crystal sugar, but it seems that the 4 Litter sized bottle is required.
I bought the 4litter sized bottle, 600yen (made in Japan). (June 6th)
I found a cheaper bottle at that store, each bottle shape looked close. The other one was made in China. To extract the essence from Ume needs longer months, I guess that the contents will be influenced against UV. I chose "made in Japan", because it is using UV cut attribute glass.

Attention
Sugar and the white distilled liquor of high purity are indispensable elements in order to extract the ingredient of an ume. Therefore, 35 degrees or more are indispensable for white distilled liquor, and at least 200 - 300gr sugar is needed.

Shopping List for preparation of Umeshu
1) Ume ; 1kg
2) Crystal sugar ;  300~800gr 
3) White distilled liquor of 35 degrees (white distilled liquor) ; 1.8 Litter
4) Preservation container; 4 litter sized bottle

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Key Word : White distilled liquor, Ume, crystal sugar, 青梅, 焼酎, 氷砂糖

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