It’s Monday! Have some root juice! Cozy up in your armchair with your Dark n’ Stormy, friends – this post’s a long’un!
Ginger beer is all the rage right now, and for a very good reason. The sweet and spicy bevvie is tasty by itself, plus adds pep to all sorts of cocktails and mocktails. If you’re anything like me, you could add ginger beer to all of your cocktails from now until doomsday. Most of us think of ginger beer in the context of the Dark n’ Stormy and other cocktails that involve the brew. But didyouknow you can make a stellar ginger beer at home, and not only is it easy, but it’s also great for you?
Because we like to do things in the legit-est of ways, we’re going to put on our DIY cap and learn how to make fermented ginger beer at home. And it’s going to be healthier than the store-bought version, because that’s the way we roll.
There are about a zillion ways to make ginger beer. Most people make a simple syrup using ginger, sugar, and water, and then combine the simple syrup with soda water. While this is the least time consuming way of making ginger beer, and definitely comes out tasting great, we can take it a step farther by fermenting ginger beer into a healthful drink.
All it takes is fresh grated ginger, cream of tartar, lemon juice, baker’s yeast, and water. I like preparing ginger beer in this way because the yeast consumes the sugar as it reproduces, which means that while the finished product tastes sweet, it is actually very low in sugar.
Keep in mind, the recipe I am sharing in this post is the easy version of fermented ginger beer. The authentic version uses a “ginger bug” which is ginger that has fermented in sugar and water to the point that its natural enzymes and probiotics are released. Once a ginger bug is formed, it is then brewed into a batch of ginger brew, which results in a probiotic-rich effervescent drink. This method of making ginger beer takes between 4 and 6 weeks, and is the method I describe in my cookbook, Delicious Probiotic Drinks.
But for those of us who want ginger beer like yesterday, this easy version only takes 3 days from start to finish. It still has health benefits from the yeast, but because it is not fermented for as long as the authentic version, it isn’t as probiotic-rich.
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