Following on from my previous entry - the homebrew brewed out in about 4 days. My friend said that you can tell when it has finished brewing because the carbon dioxide stops bubbling out the fermentation lock. Another perhaps more accurate way to determine that the brew is ready for bottling is to use a hydrometer (opens new window).
From here we performed the following steps:
Check all the bottles for mould by peering inside the neck of the bottles. It is important to check not only the bottom of the bottle but also the sides as mould can ruin your beer.
Use a ratio of 1 teaspoon of sterilisation powder to 1 litre of water and pour the liquid via a funnel into each bottle. Then rinse the bottles out with water.
To initiate the second fermentation process, put 1 level teaspoon of sugar in each bottle. This process is where the beer gets its fizz.
Cap the bottles. I was recommended to use a bottle-capper but I do know of others who successfully use the screw tops that came with their beer bottles.
Store the bottles in a stable, warm enviroment, such as a hot water cupboard for 2-3 months. I initially stored mine for 2 months but found that when I opened them, a lot of the beer fizzed (opens new window) out the top and was wasted. If this happens, the beer needs to be left longer, perhaps for an additional 2 weeks, and then tested again until they don’t fizz out any longer.
Now your beer is ready to enjoy!
N.B. You will need to get a beer glass (opens new window) in order to truly enjoy your homebrew beer and you will also need to learn how to pour your beer properly. This is because there is sediment that settles at the bottom of the bottle and which you don’t want to drink (it tastes awful!).
As some of you may be aware, this recipe is licensed under a Creative Commons License, which means you can copy and use it any way you like, as long as you attribute me as the author. As an side, these generous folk have also opensourced (opens new window) their beer making process.