A couple of bottles of our ginger ale. I love having a worthy purpose for old bottles!
I never thought I'd ever get this excited about a non-alcoholic drink. But guess what folks? I have just made ginger ale!! (or ginger beer, as the recipe I used calls it)
And I'm just going to go on and say it: It's amazing.
It's dry and spicy and zingy. It is reminiscent of that lovely Reed's stuff you spend a fortune on at EarthFare. It was so fizzy that when we Birch and I opened the first bottle this morning it fizzed out like champagne! Very exciting!
I used the recipe from one of my kitchen bibles as follows:
3 inches or more of fresh grated ginger root
2 cups sugar
Make a ginger bug to start the fermentation: Add 2 tsp grated ginger (skin and all) and 2 tsp sugar to 1 cup of water. Stir well and leave in a warm spot covered with a cloth to allow air circulation. Add same amount of ginger and sugar every day or two and stir until the bug starts to bubble (2 days - 1 week
Make the ginger beer anytime after the bug becomes active. Boil 2 quarts water. Add 2-6 inches of grated ginger root (depending on how spicy/gingery you want your drink to be!) and 1-1/2 cups sugar. Boil the mixture for about 15 minutes. Cool.
Strain out ginger and add juice of the lemons and the strained ginger bug. (If you want, you can keep a bit of the ginger bug to jumpstart future batches. Simply replenish with water ginger and sugar.) Add enough water to make 1 gallon.
Bottle in resealable bottles. Bail-top beer bottles or soda bottles work well. Leave bottles to ferment in a warm spot for about 2 weeks.
Chill before opening. Remember -- when you open your bottles, have a glass handy for the champagne-like fizz!
So that's it. So easy! And yummy. And seriously...who doesn't love the sound of the words "ginger bug"?