Friday, August 16, 2013

Homemade Ginger Ale


This stuff works. It calms the stomach, and really quenches the thirst. However, apart from that ginger has numerous health benefits. In fact, if I was to talk about all the uses ginger has in traditional and folk medicine from countries worldwide, I could probably write a novel! So let’s stick to what is well known.
Ginger helps the digestion. When combined with several other probiotic ingredients, like in this recipe, it aid digestion even more. It increases circulation, and helps with PMS cramps and heat cramps as well.
I realize that using ginger might not be for everyone, some find it too hot, but give this recipe a try. You will surprise family and friends with your old school farm girl knowledge.
Here are 3 recipes for homemade ginger ale I tried recently. One is for the impatient person and the other ones are for those who don't mind waiting few days (sometimes me) and then be rewarded with truly home-brewed ginger ale or you could even call it a ginger beer. It does have small amount of alcohol and superb, intense gingery flavor. Spicy and very refreshing, would definitely make a great cocktail mixer. It makes Gin and Ginger sound very good all of a sudden.
So gather your ingredients and a jar or bottle and get ready to make your own Ale

To make Ginger Beer you will need:
1c sugar
freshly grated ginger root (1 1/2-2 tablespoons), use the fresh ginger root you can find, it really makes a difference
juice of one lemon
1/4tsp baker's yeast
cold fresh spring or filtered water
special equipment:
clean 2L plastic bottle, funnel, patience
Directions:
Through a funnel add sugar and yeast to a plastic bottle. Mix grated ginger root and lemon juice and then transfer it to a bottle, add water to fill it half way and shake well to mix all ingredients. Add more water, leaving about an inch head space, screw the cap on and shake again. You can also mix all the ingredients in a jar and then transfer to a plastic bottle (as I did). Leave in a warm place for about two days and then transfer to refrigerator, to stop fermentation process. Refrigerate overnight. Pour it trough a strainer and enjoy!
Got this recipe over at http://www.monikakotus.com/
***
Another version I found which is the first one I tried 
Homemade Ginger Ale
Ingredients:
3/4 cup ginger  peeled and grated (use less if sharing with children, approx. 1/2 cup)
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (or ditch the lemon juice and double the lime)
1/2 cup sugar (go with unrefined such as Sucanat )
2 teaspoons sea salt (grind or grate coarse grains into fine)
1/4 cup whey
6 cups water
Follow these instructions and you will be sipping your own ginger ale in a couple days.

Place all ingredients into a jar ( preferably a 2 quart jar) but not to the very top, leave about an inch of space
Stir and cover
Leave at room temperature for approximately 2 or 3 days and then put it in the fridge
Strain into a jug or bottle to serve
You can also age this drink for longer if desired. I find it is better when aged a bit longer, but most times I am too impatient! This drink can be served chilled or warm. It is better not to drink it quickly. Sip the drink on those hot days and appreciate the thirst quenching power of ginger.

**whey is a protein supplement but you can make this without it

Ginger Ale, an instant gratification version:
found this over at http://www.monikakotus.com/
1 cup fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup sugar
2 cups water
club soda
juice of one or two limes, juice from half lemon
mint for garnish

Directions:
Combine ginger, sugar and water in a saucepan. Simmer slowly for 10 minutes, until sugar is dissolved and ginger is softened.

Strain warm syrup and allow to cool. Fill a tall glass with ice, add 1 part(used 2oz shot glass) of ginger syrup and 3 parts of club soda.
Squeeze lime and lemon wedge into glass. Use more syrup if desired. Garnish with mint. Stir and enjoy the zing.

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