Ginger Beer

When the weather starts to cool I start craving strong gingery flavors. Ginger is a very fallish root, don’t you think? This is another recipe that is a bit time consuming, but worth it. I drink this when I want something a little sweet or in lieu of alcohol when I am on yet-another-health-kick. That said, it’s great with booze too. Don’t aim for perfection when grating the ginger root. I generally do a sloppy peel and throw it in the Cuisinart, or use a box grater. If you go this route, be sure to steep the mixture for about 35 minutes instead of the recommended 30. I’ve cut the sugar in half  because I thought it was a bit sweet; I also added some cardamon for a bit more depth. Now, let’s all pretend we are setting sail for the Caribbean. 

Receta’s Ginger Beer-  Adapted from the Spice Necklace by Ann Vanderhoof

Lovely travel memoir with recipes!

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups water
  • 3 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. cardamon
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 lb. ginger root, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tbs. lime juice
  • club soda
  • lime garnishes

Instructions:

  1. In a medium sized saucepan, bring 2 cups water to a boil with the spices. Remove from heat and leave to steep for about 30 minutes.
  2. Add remaining 6 cups hot water to grated ginger. Leave to steep for about 30 minutes.
  3. Remove spices from the boiled water and stir in sugar. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer just until sugar has thoroughly dissolved, stirring occasionally.
  4. Strain ginger water, squeezing ginger until it is quite dry, then discard.
  5. Combine spiced sugar water, ginger water and lime juice. Allow mixture to settle (so sediment sinks to the bottom), then strain through a fine sieve, pour into bottles and refrigerate.
  6. When ready to serve add ice and ginger beer concentrate until the glass is ⅔ full. Top with club soda.

Makes approx. 2 quarts of ginger beer concentrate
** Dark and Stormy: This drink originated in Bermuda, where it is traditionally make with dark rum. Combine 2 oz. of dark rum with 4 oz. of ginger beer concentrate and a splash of soda. Serve with a wedge of lime.

 

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