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Tang Hooch Answered

I heard today that a common way to make booze in prison is to mix Tang, bread, and sugar (all hoarded from rations), which becomes some kind of sick form of alcoholic beverage. Needless to say "Instructables!" first came to mind. Have you heard of this and/or tried it and/or tasted it? Even more burning of a question: Did you do this as a kid?


its disgusting don't do it! Yours truly used to make "homemade" wine like that except with bread yeast. It taste like a mixture of sour, yuck, and beer. I dont know if i got drunk off of it but it sure did give me a head ache.

I sucessfully made wine in a pickle jar with sugar and bread yeast, and pine needles for tannin. I poked holes in the lid to let out CO2 and covered with a towel when it started to smell vineagary. I gave it away, and I'm told it tasted like it had bear's teeth in it. :-D

I made some truly great muscadine wine this last year. But prior to that, I mostly made the bear-tooth flavored vinegar.

I remember a girl used a similar "love Potion" on me so I would go dancing with her.

Might be a question for Martha Stewart. It might be a good thing.

In prison, it's often called Pruno. Most any fruit, sugar and yeast will do the job. It's usually made in a plastic bag. The alcohol level is low, and the yuck factor is high.

I would ask how you know these things, but frankly I'm afraid to.

Actually I've behaved pretty much that way on behalf of my sister. But as far as the skunk kids go, I can't really hit the brakes, I just steer them as best I can!

Yep, you don't want to know. But don't worry much. I've never "done time".

Why don't you have a go at this and share the experience? If it's not been published here before, I think you should.
Go on


Sounds like a plan. Put bread in a sock, stick the sock in a plastic bag full of fruit juice and tie it up with a straw in the neck (pointing downward to keep as much fungi spores etc. outside the bag). Steve reported his had an alcohol concentration over 10% (14% for the "white"), which I'm sure would kill a lot of nasties :)

Bread probably will not provide the yeast necessary to start the fermentation; that can be gotten from the air (yeah, it's everywhere ;-)

The problem is, one type of yeast produces alcohol as it's waste product, and another produces acetic acid (yes, that is normally called vinegar). It will turn a wine or and juice sour. I have seen 'condiments' created in jars using fruits and a little juice; many for ice cream, but this is just as chancy (not harmful chancy, but you could ruin some good fruit). I have never gotten it to work though, mine always gets moldy ;-)

I have heard of prisoners making alcohol from fermented honey buns...I'd so like to try that...


9 years ago

Google "prison wine", it's an established practise, I think. It has roots that go a long way back- British POWs in Colditz during WWII were making "jam-alc" out of turnip jam. In the breaks between building telescopes, fake Nazi uniforms and a glider.

Steve of The Sneeze did a great writeup of it here.

Make mead. Far better, working on Ible currently, publication estimate in a few months.

. My guess it that it won't work very well. Too much citric acid.

. And a lot of the sweeteners in Tang aren't sugars.
"The new packaging advertises "1/2 the Sugar of 100% juice." The artificial sweeteners used in the new formulation are Sucralose, acesulfame potassium, and Neotame." - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tang_(drink)