You may have heard about a cheap, quick way to make a kind of homemade alcohol. Often called “hooch” it is defined as an alcoholic liquor, especially inferior, or an illicit whiskey. Hooch can go by many different names, including pruno, hooch, brew, prison wine, and buck.
More importantly, it’s a homemade alcoholic beverage, and knowing how to make it could be a great skill to add to your preparedness plan. Not only can you make it for yourself, but you could also most definitely barter it in a SHTF situation. Having a go-to recipe that works well for you will give you options if you need to resort to bartering in the future. Valuable commodities like medicine, sugar and salt, seeds, knives, and tobacco are a few of the six kinds of currency that will be tradable in a long-term emergency. Another important item to stock up on is alcohol.
SHTF Uses for Alcohol
- Alcohol has long been used in place of antiseptic and can clean wounds, sterilize needles, knives and other instruments.
- This barter item can also be used as fuel for engines (use as fuel on small equipment, generators, etc).
- Alcohol can also be added to medicinal herbs to make tinctures and elixirs.
- Use alcohol as a solvent to use to clean guns, razors and other tools.
- In a dire situation, alcohol can also be given to an injured person as a numbing agent so medical or dental procedures can be performed.
One of the most important things you will need is yeast. You can purchase it, or make it from fruits or flowers that are natural to your area. To harvest wild yeast, you will need to:
- Collect your wild fruits or flowers in a sterile jar. Try to use what you have in abundance in your area. For us, that’s serviceberries (Saskatoon berries.) Leave your flowers or fruits in a dilution of 20 percent sugar to water (eg 40g of sugar to 200ml of water).
- After 48 hours (although this will depend on the ambient temperature), sediment should start to form on the bottom of the jar, bubbles will start appearing, and your solution will begin to ferment. This is a sign of a healthy solution!
- Remove the fruit or the flowers from the liquid.
- Continue feeding your liquid with sugar every day for a week. After that, you will have your own yeast culture that you can use to start brewing with!
Ingredients You’ll Need
*This quantity of ingredients will make 2 gallons of hooch.
- 2 pounds unrefined cane sugar
- 2 gallons of water
- 2 cups of your premade wild yeast solution (see above instructions on how to make wild yeasts)
How To Make It
- Melt the sugar into a gallon of hot water, until the sugar has dissolved.
- Mix in the remaining gallon of water to help cool off the sugar water, make sure you cool it down to 100F degrees. This process is creating a wort in which you pitch the yeast.
- Once the liquid has cooled down pitch the yeast. Stir it well and transfer it to a container with an airlock for a minimum of 1 week before consuming.
The video below explains the simple process of making your own hooch.
Hooch is relatively easy to make and doesn’t take more than a few weeks. Have you tried it? What are your suggestions for a great wild yeast? Would you consider making hooch to barter if the SHTF? Share your thoughts with Ready Nutrition readers in the comments!
*DISCLAIMER/Botulism Warning: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if processed incorrectly, it can give you botulism, a life-threatening illness. It’s hard to know if your pruno/hooch has botulism toxin in it, because you can’t see, smell, or taste the toxin. Read more at the CDC.