Homemade Ginger Ale

bottledgingA lot of store-bought beverages contain GMOs, HFCS and artificial ingredients.  If you’re like me, you stand there in the store reading labels trying to figure out if this is something you should be drinking and then wind up getting bottled water or going without. A nice treat, is to make your own soda at home.

I grow all the ingredients on my farm: turmeric, ginger, and lemon. I keep bees, so I use my own honey too.  You can buy the yeast from a brew store or you can use bread yeast. It works the same.

 

gingeraleingrI like to make a root beer with ginger and turmeric roots. You could try experimenting and make soda out of any type of fruit or herb inspired tea as long as there is also sugar or honey and yeast. I taste it along the way and if I feel it needs more ginger, turmeric, lemon or honey, I add it in the pot.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces of ginger root
  • 2 ounces of turmeric root (leave out if you just want a ginger ale)
  • 1 lemon
  • 1-3/4 cup honey or 2 cups sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon of yeast
  • 1 gallon of water

Things you will need:

  • thermometer
  • large stainless steel pot
  • sterilized bottles with flip-top (Grolsch Style)
  • funnel
  • canning tongs
  • strainer

Place the cooking pot and water on your stove and start to heat it to boiling. Peel and smash the roots with a mortar and pestle and add to pot. Slice lemon, add to pot with a squeeze along with the rind. You can add tangerine, lime or orange if you like. The rind may add a bitterness you don’t like, just use less. Bring this to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes. Shut off and add the honey or sugar and stir until dissolved. Put the lid back on and let rest for 10 minutes. Take lid off and let cool to 110 degrees.

This is a good time to sterilize your bottles. Use only sturdy bottles–like beer bottles–that can withstand pressure. Make sure there are no cracks or chips in the bottle. Don’t use bottles with corks or twist-top caps.

In a large pot heat up water to a boil and then immerse your bottles for 10 minutes in a simmer making sure to also do the top and cage. Fill them with water so they don’t clink with each other and float.  Remove with your canning tongs to cool.

When your brew is at 110 degrees add the yeast and let sit for an hour.

First strain and then bottle your brew using a funnel. Don’t fill completely to the top. Leave an air gap and seal.

carbginger

Second day and starting to fizz

Place bottles in a cool, dark, out of the way place that is still highly accessible. You will need to burp your bottles at least every day until less and less fermentation is taking place.

Don’t go too long without doing it because too much pressure can cause the bottles to explode. Slowly release the cage with your hand on the stopper and release the gas or it will pour out like a champagne bottle!

You can also ferment the soda in a gallon jug with an air lock for a day during the high fermentation period before bottling.

It will be ready to drink in about 1-2 weeks. Best to place in the refrigerator to chill before you open them to prevent too much fizz.

This particular recipe is also medicinal with the benefits of ginger and turmeric. It’s considered a small beer or small ale — with very little alcohol so it can be enjoyed without getting light headed or drunk.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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