Cream of Tartar

OK, here's one of those weird things we/I take for granted. I know cream of tartar is used in desserts (???), but I've not used it in this millennium. What is it, where does it come from, will it be available if folks want it in the Long Descent. I had no idea it was a precipitate from fresh grape juice and a by-product of wine-making. And it's also used as a household cleaner.

ClareBroommaker's picture

I keep it with my cleaning supplies. Never use it in cooking; but then I don't make merengues and such. The one thing it has been superb for was cleaning our canning jars that got really green stained the first time we pressure canned lambsquarters. I tried soaking, bleaching, vinegar, salt scrubs, baking soda, strong detergent, everything I could think of. Then I asked a skilled, trained by USDA canning person. He told me to dissolve cream of tartar in water and let it sit overnight in the jar. Amazing! The green was gone, the glass was crystal clear and squeaky clean.

If I were producing it with wine, I sure would try to save it, even if I had to take other precipitates with it.

David Trammel's picture

Yes. I get lots and lots of the potassium bitartrate crystals when I make wine from juice. I've often wondered if I could make cream of tartar out of it whenever I clean up the mess they make in the jerry cans that I get the juice in. Alas, no time to investigate, however. Maybe when I'm retired.