|Fresh, bubbly ginger beer|
Well Preserved's recipe is the one I went with, which was straightforward and clear. Both phases of this technique were a cinch to follow, and my end result turned out deliciously, though I have to say I wanted more ginger. Maybe even double the ginger flavor. Note to self for next batch.
Making the ginger "bug", or ferment starter was fun...I liked the process of feeding it every day and putting my ear down close to listen for the frothing sounds of fermentation. Once it was in bottles I also liked inspecting for bubbles and any other evidence of something happening inside the glass. And man, when I opened the first bottle and it fizzed like crazy (no explosions, thank you), I must say it was extremely satisfying. I guess I am a bubble lover. (Which probably means I am a fermenting freak, even if I don't know it yet.)
Follow along with the blow-by-blow version in pictures below. The recipe at the end is like a pot of gold.
|Slice the ginger into coins, skin and all|
|Then finely dice for the ginger "bug" or starter|
|Put ginger in a quart-size jar and add sugar and water|
|Cover jar with cheesecloth and a band to allow in air but not flies|
|Day 2, after feeding|
|Day 3, cloudier|
|Day 4, fizzing away|
|Hello bubble friends!|
|This ginger measures up|
|Chopped and ready|
|Bringing ginger, sugar and water to a boil|
|After mixture has cooled, strain to remove solids|
|Add the juice of two lemons and the ginger bug to the strained syrup|
|After straining again and adding water, into bottles it goes|
|Then it becomes a waiting game...|
|I opened the first bottle after two weeks...|
|Look at the effervescence|
|So pleasing to the eye and palate|
Two bottles made it to 3 weeks of fermentation. After chilling in the refrigerator, out they came for cocktail duty. I chose my day well too, it was some 80 degrees out...sipping weather at its finest. Now you can mix up a batch of my favorite beer cocktail recipe below, and put your feet up. Yup, it's summertime, and the living is easy.
Inspired by the Buli-Buli drink at one of my all-time favorite brunch spots, Primo Patio Cafe, this beer cocktail is refreshing and oh-so-simple to make. It's perfect for summer barbeques or parties since you can whip it up by the pitcherful. It will be so popular you will need to!
2 bottles (or cans) of beer — I prefer Red Stripe, but any lager or lighter style beer such as Pacifico will do
2 cups of ginger beer
Juice of 4 limes + 1 lime, quartered for garnish
4 Tb ginger syrup
4 Tb sugar
A lot of ice
You could also substitute ginger ale for the ginger beer, but remember to reduce the sweetener if you do.
Pour into cups and enjoy!