Grape Molasses drink
November 14, 2010 • Category: Beverages
Grape molasses is a fascinating food.
It is a sweet-tasting molasses; a natural sweetener made from the fresh grapes harvested in the fall. It was used exclusively in Lebanese villages before the widespread availability of refined white sugar.
Its nutritious benefits are immeasurable. It is very rich in minerals.
Grape molasses has health benefits as well.
Grape molasses can be used to sweeten cookies, cakes and breads; it can be made into a refreshing drink; it can flavor puddings; it can be used in BBQ sauce and gravies; it can be made into a broth to cook beans or grains or in meat stews.
Grape molasses has been used in Lebanon (and adjoining countries), Greece (petimezi), France (raisiné), Italy, Turkey (pekmez) as well as in Asian countries.
I wanted to make some myself!
- 10 pounds of fresh and sweet grapes (this is an approximate weight)
- 2 eggs (boil, wash and collect the eggshells)
- Wash the grapes as well as possible; place in batches in a food processor bowl, removing the stems.
- Process for a couple of minutes. Pour into a sieve set over a large pot.
- Press with a mallet to extract as much liquid as possible. You should have 2 liters (8 cups of liquid).
- Set over the stove over medium heat with a tablespoon or so of crushed eggshells. The liquid will froth, skim it repeatedly, then pour through a sieve again. Set back on the stove and simmer for about 4 and up to 6 hours, stirring with a wooden spoon through the bottom, making sure it does not burn.
- When the liquid has the consistency of a syrup (it sticks to a spoon) and is a deep garnet color, it is ready.
- Pour into a jar and let it cool.
Skim the surface every time froth appears.
Expect to get a scant cup of molasses for 8 cups of grape juice.
To read more on grape molasses, click here and here, as well as here.
For a selection of recipes using grape molasses:
Rice pudding with grape molasses
50 Comments • Comments Feed
TS of eatingclub says:
Oh, interesting. What is the purpose of the eggshells?
On November 15, 2010 at 12:20 am
Amazing!! I think I’ve mentioned before that the only kind of molasses I’ve seen here in Australia is blackstrap molasses (oh, and pomegranate), but I never would have considered trying to make my own other kind of molasses! I’m absolutely in awe of you – this looks so delicious 🙂
On November 15, 2010 at 12:22 am
I am so glad to read this. I bought some pomegranate molasses and saw the grape molasses, but I had no idea what to do with it. I always have to check out the Middle Eastern Market(it’s very tiny) when I read your blog to see if I can find what you use.
On November 15, 2010 at 12:35 am
I always bring along some from Cyprus. It is called epsima and in Greek Petimezi. I love it and use it in lots of recipes. I also brough carob molasses and have a post I was working on and left it unfinished which I will post soon. I don’t think they add the egg shells when they make it in Cyprus and Greece.
On November 15, 2010 at 3:06 am
Ivy, in Lebanon they add chalk during the first boiling.
Ruba: I would stir it from time to time, but let it simmer gently on the stove for hours.
TS: I believe the eggshells are a coagulant agent as well as a disinfectant, but don’t quote me yet! 🙂
Pixen: Any grapes are good! Green or red, and the sweeter the better!
Eve: you can half the recipe! It does not really matter how much grapes because it is going to get reduced a lot.
On November 15, 2010 at 9:00 am
This is my ultimate comfort food, a childhood favorite. Every year my grandparents would crush the grapes and make grape molasses while we were growing up. We call this in Armenian (puhr- poor) meaning foam. We would anxiously await each summer for puhr-poor night, where we gather with close friends and relatives in anticipation for the grape juice to become thick molasses, and start foaming on top. My uncle would reach into a barrel using a hollow gourd as a ladle, and begin to ribbon the molasses through the air, like a little bit of fireworks and drama. Everyone would taste the sweet foam when the syrup bubbled up like a volcanic eruption. When I close my eyes, this recipe transports me back to my youth. Joumana thank you for recreating this love in a jar.
On November 15, 2010 at 3:12 am
A wonderful produce!
On November 15, 2010 at 4:26 am
Interesting molasses, never tried making molasses at home, thanks for sharing with us..
On November 15, 2010 at 4:27 am
I have been following your lovely blog for a while and was meaning to thank you for all the wonderful recipes!
Would love to try this one out, a bit hesitant because of the preparation time (does require constant stirring on the stove or just close supervision, as some recipes I have seen only say it needs one hour?
On November 15, 2010 at 7:37 am
Lea Ann says:
I love your blog, I learn so much about foods I’ve never heard of. I’ll have to look closer at the molasses section next time I’m at the store.
On November 15, 2010 at 8:42 am
Fantastic recipe, Joumana, Many people can’t find the grape molasses, so they can make your version! I’ve seen Greek versions (Petimezi) where ashes are also used to make it. Curious to try both versions and see if there are any differences. Hmmm…..
On November 15, 2010 at 9:36 am
Delicious, Joumana. My grandpa used to put eggshells in his coffee. It was supposed to remove any bitterness. And it also helped the grounds settle.
On November 15, 2010 at 9:39 am
Esef aka pixen says:
woohooo… this is great..now I can make grape mollasse when I’m back home in Southeast Asia! Oh may I know which type of grapes to use?
Egg Shells, Chalk… both share same made up of Calcium Carbonate. It’s really like coagulant for Tofu as well (nigari (natural magnesium chloride), natural calcium sulfate or gypsum).
@ Barbara… interesting solution for non-coffee lovers I known. They said it’s bitter 😀
On November 15, 2010 at 9:56 am
I LOVE these recipes where you make your basic condiment or such. But the thought of 10 pounds of grapes! lol. That is a lot of grapes. Really interesting about the egg shell use. Et merci pour la réponse de l’autre billet!
On November 15, 2010 at 10:17 am
T.W. Barritt says:
Wow! My first thought was “I wonder where to buy this.” But you MADE it yourself! Even better!
On November 15, 2010 at 10:49 am
Although I really don’t think I’ll be making homemade grape molasses soon…I did (thanks to you) get a jar of this great stuff from the last time I had read about it here.
I’m so glad you listed some recipes…because I just went to grab your oatmeal cookie recipe…will try these for sure ;o)
Ciao for now and have a great day,
On November 15, 2010 at 11:00 am
Love the squash-so good for a winter treat. Thanks for the molassas info. It looks delicious and making some homemade is the way to go.
On November 15, 2010 at 11:08 am
On November 15, 2010 at 12:10 pm
Damaris @Kitchen Cor says:
O.K now tell me where I can but it. I’ve never hard of grape mollasses and even though your recipe looks great and adventurous you’re super woman and I am not, my babies would hate me if I had to simmer something for 6 hours. Question, do you think it would work in a slow cooker?
On November 15, 2010 at 2:43 pm
Damaris: it does not work in a slow cooker. If you want to buy it, Amazon offers it online. All middle-eastern (Greek, Turkish, Armenian) stores should carry it.
Katerina: in Lebanon it is made with chalk (I guess similar to ashes in what it does); I asked my friend, Um Elias, who brought us a jar made with grapes from our orchard what she used and her answer was ” I took it to the village’s grape press!”
Mag: the molasses is going to be a “lite” version of the original; however the taste beats anything you will buy at the store.
On November 15, 2010 at 4:11 pm
Radhika @ foodfor7stages says:
I was wondering why egg would be used in Molasses, but I am absolutely stunned by this technique. can’t wait to make this.
On November 15, 2010 at 4:44 pm
In Greece we make petimezi with the extract of grapes which is boiled with ashes. I have never heard of using egg shells(at least not here), it is very interesting. I am curious if it tastes as the Greek one. I have never made petimezi but I know that it is a very time consuming procedure and tiring. Also only 1/3 of the amount of grape extract becomes petimezi.
On November 15, 2010 at 5:11 pm
Bria @ WestofPersia says:
Absolutely fascinating historical notes and recipe. I think I’ll skip making my own, because I lack motivation at the moment. 😉 But I’ll definitely pick some up next time I see them.
On November 15, 2010 at 5:32 pm
I hadn’t heard of grape molasses until a while ago in your post. It was on my buy list. Now after your post of how to make it, I have to try making it. And to think I was doing just fine before I knew about it’s existance! Hmmm
On November 15, 2010 at 6:34 pm
What a great post! I absolutely love making things like this at home, I’m definitely going to try this out!
On November 15, 2010 at 6:48 pm
Wow! Pretty impressive. I finally bought some grape molasses so I can use in my cooking. Can’t believe you made your version. Pretty cool.
On November 15, 2010 at 7:50 pm
Whoa. I bet this would make for some excellent grape molasses-infused gingerbread.
On November 15, 2010 at 10:48 pm
Bria @ WestofPersia says:
Glad you liked the bars; regarding your query on flax: Yes, flax seeds are great for you, especially when ground, because your body can actually digest them. They have lots of healthy fats that are fantastic for the skin and heart. And they can double as a binder (egg substitute) in recipes.
On November 15, 2010 at 11:30 pm
I’ve never heard of grape molasses. It’s so beautiful! I would love to try it!
On November 16, 2010 at 1:08 am
Hélène (Cannes) says:
Oh mais tu es courageuse ! ;o)
On November 16, 2010 at 3:17 am
I cannot keep up with you, you are such a prolific poster! So I have finally used pomegranate molasses – in a marinade and in a salad dressing, and I absolutely loved it. It gives such a “mmm, what is that?” flavor. And now you have me on to grape. So be it!
And thank you for stopping by the Urbanite, that was sweet of you!
On November 16, 2010 at 10:00 am
I’ve never had grape molasses, but you have made me curious to give it a try. It looks beautiful and sounds delicious. I hope you have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary
On November 16, 2010 at 10:38 am
Hi Joumana 🙂
Oh I thought it was much more difficult than that :)) would love to try it myself instead of buying it 🙂 Thanks 🙂
On November 16, 2010 at 11:21 am
I would love to make this one day and try it in savory sauces and desserts.
Maybe I’ll try the readymade one first to get a better idea for flavor/consistency.
On November 16, 2010 at 12:58 pm
I’ve never had grape molasses… this looks and sounds very interesting.
On November 17, 2010 at 6:37 pm
I love the look of your grapes molasses, looks so delicious and appealing to the eyes.
On November 18, 2010 at 1:21 am
I love grape molasses but never thought to make it for myself, I cannot wait to try this. What a special treat and what a wonderful gift for people to explore a wonderful new food product.
On November 24, 2010 at 1:37 pm
thanks so much! I have so many grape vines,but not good for wine. Now i know what i can do with them! A ton of grapes is alot of jelly. . Thanks again! Blessings, twinkle.
On September 13, 2011 at 8:18 am
seems i missed this posting for some reason….
I got a good recipe for the Malban Aoukoudeh, and it requires grape molasses which
is hard to find in North Bay. Thanks for the posting… my question to you what is the difference in using ashes or eggshell, only to create the foam??? does it makes any difference in taste…. I know in Baalback they used ashes in many recipes and for making the raisin also.
On March 20, 2012 at 7:52 pm
@Arlette: I don’t have the answer yet but I am planning to investigate/All I know is that it is hard to reproduce the same molasses at home due to various factors, type of grape, method used, etc.
On March 20, 2012 at 10:46 pm
Joumana, what do you think- may be, it’s possible to prepare such syrup by sun-evaporating method? I hate to stand near stove and tediously mix something. I would prefer method “to put and forget about it for a few hours”.
On August 14, 2012 at 11:44 am
@Elena: I have never heard of such a method, so I would be excited to know the result if you try it. My friend Mylady (a robust, and very healthy 84-year old) makes hers in her kitchen and this Fall, I will make it with her; she first uses some clay to purify the syrup then she strains it then boils it down; it tastes magnificent, like caramel; but the key is the variety of grapes; the grapes in Lebanon are called merwah and I will find out what is the equivalent overseas.
On August 14, 2012 at 1:14 pm
phil barkley says:
I was reading in a study bible Ruth and it mentioned wine molasses I had only heard of cane / blackstrap thank you for your fascinating web site I will come again and try you recipes. Phil
On May 7, 2013 at 1:18 am
@Phil: Thank you for the praise, hope you enjoy the site, got almost 1000 recipes in here. 🙂
On May 7, 2013 at 1:47 am
How would you store this? Will it keep a year in the refrigerator? Can it be processed in glass canning jars? (now allergic to cane sugar and looking for alternatives)
On November 2, 2013 at 1:54 pm
@Nancy: Grape molasses (as all other molasses) keeps for up to 2 years; however, I would be reluctant to tell you how to make it as I don’t know exaxctly how I would make it in the US and what type of grapes to use as well as what type of clay or limestone to use; the techniques that would work in Lebanon would not necessarily work elsewhere. I’d suggest using locally made molasses; there is a farm in New York State that makes some apple cider molasses (their name is on my blog roll); also, you can easily find date, grape and carob molasses at ethnic mediterranean stores.
On November 3, 2013 at 12:42 am
I wonder if you have the procedure for the sour grape molasses
On June 19, 2016 at 12:09 pm
@khaled: you mean for vinegar? or the sweet debs el-ennab? one uses sour grapes to make verjuice and the other makes a sweet and thick molasses.
On June 20, 2016 at 2:49 pm
Amir Qullikutz says:
It’s a very old tradition in Hunza-Pakistan. We call it “KHANDA”and prepared from Apricots, Grapes, Mulberries. These fruits ate cultivated in every garden. My ancestral garden “khush Bagh” at Hunza is more than two hundred years old and planted by my great great grand father Daulat Mand and well mainted by his son Malik Ashdar.
Vety recently I have started a home-based small factory for travellers. Molasses (khanda) of White Mulberry, grapes and apricot will be available at Aliabad-Hunza/pakistan.
On April 1, 2018 at 4:33 pm