If you’re a Whisky lover, then you’re obviously no stranger to the significance of peat in some of our favourite single malts and blends.
That “peaty” goodness that some of us choose over other flavour notes, is probably the thread that binds us together as lovers of the smoky stuff.
For the uninitiated, peat is a substance composed of partially decomposed vegetable matter forming “peat bogs”, which are dried and used as fuel and for gardening. Peat bogs are seen throughout Scotland and other parts of the world, forming about 60-70% of global wetlands.
What does peat have to do with Whisky, you ask?
Back in the day, Scots used peat to heat the pot stills. Dried peat is known to burn away fast and generate much more heat than coal. However, contrary to popular belief, this isn’t what lends the Whisky its smokiness.
In reality, the smokiness of the whisky depends on the amount of time the barley grain is exposed to the pungent peat smoke whilst drying, during the process of malting, to stop the germination of the barley. Read more about malting here.
The significance of peat in various stages of Whisky production can take hours to discuss, but that’s not why we brought you here. We’re here to share with you a very special secret recipe for edible peat, by Craig Johnstone. We can vouch that a brick of this stuff is a great accompaniment for your favourite whisky. Read on to find out how to make your own edible peat.
Craig’s Edible Peat
- 5 shredded wheat pillows
- 400 grams 85% cocoa dark chocolate
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 50 ml Ardbeg Alligator
- Break up shredded wheat pillows in a large bowl and soak in Ardbeg, making sure the Ardbeg soaks in evenly
- Break up the chocolate and melt in a measuring jug placed in a pan of boiling water
- When the chocolate has melted, stir in the honey
- Pour this mixture into the shredded wheat and stir
- Pack tightly into a suitable Tupperware container and set in the fridge
- Once set, cut into bite sized chunks. Cut halfway and break off by hand to get more roots in the peat
Craig Johnstone is a full time Whisky expert, who has in the past held some key positions such as Brand Development Manager at Bruichladdich, Tour Guide with The Scotch Whisky Experience and the Glenkinchie Distillery, Single Malt Category Manager at MMI in Dubai, and most recently, Distillery Manager at Lark Distillery.
Goes without saying that this recipe is fool proof. Follow Craig on Instagram and Twitter and let him know when you’ve tried this at home!
Follow Craig on Instagram: @whiskycraig
Follow Craig on Twitter: @whiskycraig