Sunday, June 26, 2011

Ginger Bug

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

2 lemons



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"?


Tori said...

I totally want to make this now. Think I could use mason jars?

Gina said...

They might work, but I think your best bet is bottles that have previously contained fizzy drinks because the caps are made to give and take slightly with the fizz. Those Grolsch beer bail-top bottles are the absolute best but we've also had good luck with bottles that held mineral water and kombucha.

Tori said...

Alas, I have none of those.
Perhaps a good excuse to go buy myself some fancy beer.

Gina said...