Homebrew kvass recipes

Kvass (or kvas) is a traditional Eastern Europe beverage, it is extremely popular in many Slavic countries. There are lots of different recipes for kvass. Some recipes include fruits, especially wild apples and wild pears (they are very sour). This is very ancient recipes, so because of this, all units of measurement are old Russian:

Note, that the stove mentioned in some recipes is a very massive Russian oven, it can keep the heat for days.

Apple Kvass

Put overripe wild apples in a wooden barrel, fill it to 3/4 of its volume. Pour cold water in the barrel, fill it up till the top. Seal the bunghole with a rag. Six weeks later the kvass is ready to drink. Replace the rag with a cork to make the barrel airtight. Attach a tap to the bottom of the barrel. Use this tap to pour out the kvass, but add the same amount of water into the barrel every time you pouring out the kvass.

Pear Kvass

Fry 1/4 part of wild pears just a little bit, put all pears in a barrel (1/4 light fried, 3/4 fresh pears), till filled, then pour cold water in the barrel. Use a rag to seal up the bunghole. Kvass will be ready in three weeks.

Note, that it would be a good idea to add into apple and pear kvasses 2..3 pounds of sugar and 3 glass of alcohol. But in this case you have to close the bunghole whit a cork, the kvass will be ready to drink in 1.5..2 months. This kvass has more gases and it can be stored for a longer period of time.

Both apple and pear kvasses are not common kvasses, there is no breads or rusks in their recipes. All the kvasses described below (except the yeastless oaten kvass) are classic.

Yeastless oaten kvass

Take 1 liter of oats, wash them. Put the oat seeds in a 3 litres jar, add two teaspoons of sugar or honey, pour water in the jar, to the top. Cover the jar with a napkin or cloth. Put the jar in a warm place for 2 or 3 days. You may add some raisins in the jar. This is the first filling, you'll get a dark liquid.

Pour out the liquid from the jar using a sieve. Wash oats again and put it back into the jar, add some sugar (according to your taste). Pour water in the jar and leave it for two days (if there is a hot temperature, one day is enough). Now pour out only kvass. You can use oats for two months' period, adding periodically sugar and water. The kvass will become lighter.

Rusks made of rye bread
Rye bread rusks - the base for classic kvass recipes.
Slice a loaf of rye bread into 10 mm slices, and dry them at 65-70°C

Rusk kvass

Take 5 pounds of rye rusks, put them in a vat or any other container, pour there in 4 buckets of boiling water. Ten hours later cover the vat with a napkin, pour 3 glasses of yeasts in the vat and crumble there a french bun. Nine hours later pour the kvass through a sieve in a vessel, add there 2.5 pounds of sugar, mix it and pour the kvass from the vessel into bottles, adding in each bottle a slice of lemon (but no more than 1/4 of slice) and 2 raisins. Seal the bottles and leave them for 1/2 day in the kitchen. After that, the kvass is ready. This kvass is a tasty, if you'll keep the right proportions of ingredients, you'll get a very good kvass.

Rusk kvass with no lemon

Take 4 pounds of rye rusks, put them in a vessel, and pour in the vessel 1.5 buckets of boiling water, leave it for 24 hours, then sieve it through a sieve (leave only liquid - this is a wort). Add 2 pounds of sugar, 1/3 glass of yeasts (dissolve them in a glass of wort), add some mint (prepare mint the same way as you do tea). When you see bubbles in the kvass, wait until all the foam will rise to the surface, carefully pour the foam off. Pour the kvass into bottles through a napkin. Seal bottles, keep them for 1/2 day in the kitchen, then put them in a refrigerator.

Lemon kvass

Take 4 pound of honey, slice 4 lemons (remove seeds from them), one pound of raisins and one tea cup of coarse wheat flour, put it all in a bucket with hot boiled water. Wait until temperature of the mix drops to about 40°C, then add two teacups of good yeast. Let the mix to ferment, you'll see that all mass in the mix will float up and there will be bubbles. Sieve the wort through a sieve, pour it in bottles. Seal bottles and put them in a refrigerator for 24 hours. That's all, the kvass is ready.

Recipe of daily kvass

Put 3 pounds of dried bread without crust in a bucket of boiling water, add one tablespoon of yeast and 1/2 pound of sugar. Leave this wort for a night. On the next day sieve the wort, let it settle for a while, and then pour the kvass in bottles. Add in each bottle two raisins or one teaspoon of sugar. Seal bottles. When the kvass will become fizzy, put it in a refrigerator.

Raw Ukrainian kvass recipe

Put 5 pounds of wheat flour into a vessel, pour there 1/2 bucket of boiling water, stir it up. If it is too thick, add more boiling water and stir it up to make the wort thin enough. When the temperature of the wort drops to about 40°C, add 3 pounds of wheat dough. Wait until it starts to ferment. When fermentation is in progress, on the next day, you may add some cold water and let it settle. The kvass is ready on the next day. If you pour out one glass of kvass, then pour in one glass of cold water. Do it until the kvass will lose its savoury taste.

White bottle kvass by Filatov recipe

Take 8.2 kg of flour, put it in a pot, add some warm water to rise it. Knead it and put the dough into a warm stove for 10..11 hours. After that, put the dough into a large vessel with a volume of 15 buckets, pour there 2 buckets of warm water and mix it up until lumps disappear. Now pour cold water in the vessel to its top (pour less cold water if you want to make a thicker kvass) and let it settle. Next, we have to create an additional component - take a big pot with a volume of 1.5 buckets. Put there 1.5 litres of yeast, add some wort from the large vessel (just a little bit, to make a dough), add 5 pounds of buckwheat flour, add 3 pounds of wheat flour, add a handful of rye flour. Knead it all up to destroy all lumps. Put the dough in a warm place to rise it.

Now pour the wort from the large vessel into a vat, use a sieve to filter it out, we don't need a sediment. When the additional component will be ready, pour it into the vat. Add there 1 or 1.5 pounds of honey (dilute it with the small amount of wort before add to the main wort), or use one pound of sugar instead of honey. When kvass will be ready (taste the kvass, it is ready if it stings the tongue), the additional component will be float on the top. Use a sieve to remove this additional component, pour the kvass through a filter in buckets, settle the kvass for 1/2 hours, then pour the kvass in bottles. Leave bottles in a warm room for a while, until you see bubbles, then put the kvass into a refrigerator. The kvass will be ready in two or three days. If you'll follow this recipe, you'll get an excellent white kvass.

Red mint kvass

Take 10 pounds of rye malt, 20 pounds of rye flour, 5 pounds of buckwheat flour, put it all in a pot, pour in cold water to cover it, and put the pot in a warm stove for the night. On the morning move the mass from the pot into a vat, pour hot water in the vat, mix this enough to destroy all lumps, then add 5 buckets of cold water. Let it settle for a while. This is the wort.

Now we have to create an additional component. Take a little bit of this wort, add a handful of mint, and boil it. Pour this on 4 pounds of wheat flour, cool it, add one glass of yeast and let it rise. When this additional component is ready, pour the wort into a barrel, and pour there the additional component. Wait until it starts to ferment (it will take 10..12 hours). After that, the additional component will float atop, so you have to remove it using a sieve. Then filter out the kvass and pour it into bottles. Leave it for a while in a warm room, then put the kvass in a cold place. The kvass created by this recipe is very thick and it has a mint taste.

Recipe of red kvass whit no mint

Take a pot, put there 10 pounds of rye flour and 5 pounds of rye malt, dilute it with cold water and put the pot in a worm stove for one or two days. After that, remove a dough from the pot, put it in a barrel, add 5 buckets of water - the first two buckets of water are hot, pour them and mix it up to destroy lumps, then add the three buckets of cold water. Let it settle till the evening, mixing it from time to time. Then sieve it out, put 1 glass of yeast in the kvass, and wait until you see bubbles. Then filter it out again, add two pounds of honey (but dilute the honey with some wort before add it), and pour the kvass in bottles.

One more recipe of bottle kvass

Take 1.25 pounds of wheat flour, 1.25 rye malt, 3/4 pounds of buckwheat flour, sieve it all into a pot. Pour there some boiling water to make a thick dough (it should look just like a bread dough), and mix it up. Put the pot in a warm stove for 3 hours (the temperature of the stove must be the same as for cooking breads). After that, move the dough from the pot into a barrel (the volume of this barrel is about 3 or 4 buckets), pour in the barrel 2 buckets of boiling water. Stir it, then let it settle for a while, and carefully pour it in another barrel (do not pour the residue of the wort!). When the temperature of the wort decreases to 40°C, add there 1/4 pound of honey, and add one or half glass of yeast (it depends on yeast quality) and a handful of mint. Put the barrel in a warm room and wait for a foam on the top of the barrel, then stir it up. Wait for the bubbles, and now remove the floating residue, pour kvass in bottles, using a napkin as a filter. Seal bottles and put them in a warm place, and when you'll see bubbles in bottles, put them in a refrigerator.

How to make a red kvass

Put 5 pounds of malt into a big pot (the volume of the pot is about two buckets), pour some boiling water into the pot. Cover the pot with a lid, add some flour to make a dough. Put the pot into a hot stove for 24 hours. After that, remove the pot from the stove and pour boiling water till the top of the pot. Let it settle, then remove the dough from the pot and put it into a barrel. Pour 4 buckets of cold water into the bucket, and stir it.

Next, prepare a second component: take two tablespoons of yeast, add three tablespoons of warm water, add four tablespoons of wheat flour. Put it in a warm place for 8 hours, wait until it rises. Now put this second component into the bucket, Let it settle for the night. On the morning, pour it through a filter in a vat. Add some sugar into the vat (3 tablespoons of sugar per bucket). Pour it in bottles, and add two raisins in each bottle. Seal bottles.

Potato kvass recipe

Take 1.5 buckets of potato, wash it, but don't peel it. Boil the potato (do not add salt in the water!), mash it up, add 6 pounds of rye flour and one pound of rye malt, add some water. Put it in a warm stove. On the next day, remove it from the stove, stir it and dip a foam, add hot water and stir it up. Put it in the stove again, till the evening. Then add one pound of malt, stir it up, and leave it for 1/2 hour. Then take all this mass (but not the liquid!), put it in a vat, add a handful of rye flour, mix it up, and leave it for 1/2 hour. Then add 5 buckets of cold water, stir it up after each bucket. Leave it for the night. On the next day, add two glasses of the liquid, add 1/4 glass of yeast, add some rye flour. When it rises, pour out the kvass in bottles.

Base rusk kvass

A rusk kvass is the base for other kvasses: mint, lemon, caraway-seeds kvasses and so on.

Rye rusks 1 kg
Boiling water 18 liters
Sugar 800 gram
Yeast 1/2 of a stick

Pour boiling water on rye rusks, leave it for 24 hours and filter it out (remove the sediment). Add sugar and yeast. When there will be a foam on the top, carefully pour kvass out in a vat, do not touch a sediment, and filter the kvass again, then pour the kvass in bottles and seal them, and put bottles in a cold place.

In this kvass, you may add fresh grasses (just like mint) in the wort (when it become warm). You also may add dried grasses, seeds, roots in boiling water, when you pouring it on rusks.

Hops based kvass
Water 10 liters
Hops (cones) 100 gram
Yeast 100 gram
Sugar 1 kg
Honey 0.5 liter

Pour hops with water, and boil it for 20 minutes (use a small flame). Then remove the pot from the flame, cover the pot with something warm, leave it for 3-4 hours. Filter it, let it settle. Carefully pour the wort in a vat. Warm it just a little bit, dissolve sugar and honey, add yeast and a crust of rye bread. Keep it in a worm place for several days. When fermentation is over, pour the kvass in bottles.

Caraway kvass recipe
Caraway-seeds 2 glasses
Water 5 liters
Sugar 500 gr
Raisin 200 gr
Yeast 50 gr

Wash the caraway-seeds, boil them for 10..15 minutes, cool it down. Filter it out. Add sugar and yeast. Wait until fermentation starts (it will take a time), you'll see a foam on the top of the kvass. Then add raisins and pour the kvass into bottles. Seal bottles and put them in a cold place.

Mint kvass
Dried mint 0.5 glass
Or fresh mint 1.5 glass
Water 3 liters
Sugar 3 glasses
Yeast 50 gram
Dry rye bread 1 slice
Raisin 1 tablespoon

Put the mint into a pot, pour it with boiling water, close the lid, cover the pot in a blanket, and wait about one hour. Filet it, add sugar, bread, yeast (it is better to spread the yeast on the slice of bread) and raisin. Put the pot in a worm place to wait for fermentation. When you'll see a foam, pour the kvass into bottles, seal them and put them in a cold place for one or two days.