Ginger Beer

Ginger Beer

Ginger beer is a lovely drink to have on hand, either to be enjoyed by itself, or in a cocktail with rum and a splash of soda. It has a bit of zing to it, a nice little spicy kick, that will elevate your cocktail to the next level.

YIELDS

2.75 L

PREP TIME

4½ hours + 2 – 3 days fermentation

COOK TIME

10 minutes

INGREDIENTS

What you need

  • 1 ¼ cups (271 g) Redpath ® Dark Brown Sugar, packed
  • ½ cup (115 g) fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • zest of 3 limes
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 whole allspice, lightly crushed
  • 6 whole cloves
  • ½ tsp (2 g) ground nutmeg
  • 12 cups (3 L) cold water, divided
  • ½ cup (120 ml) fresh lime juice (about 3 limes)
  • 1 tsp (3 g) instant yeast

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Combine the sugar, ginger, lime zest, cinnamon stick, allspice, cloves, nutmeg and 6 cups (1.5 L) cold water in a large pot. Set pot over medium heat and bring to a simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat; add lime juice and remaining 6 cups (1.5 L) of water. Cool mixture to 77°F (25°C); once cooled, add yeast and stir a couple of times. Cover pot with a clean tea towel and allow to sit undisturbed in a warm place for 4 hours.

2. Strain ginger beer through a fine sieve lined with cheesecloth and funnel into two 2 L clean plastic soda containers (using other sized bottles is fine, as long as ¼ of the bottle is left empty to allow space for the gas produced). Screw lids on.

3. Allow ginger beer to ferment in a cool, dark spot, carefully unscrewing the lids to release gas pressure at least once per day (mixture will become quite fizzy). Taste ginger beer after 2 days, and if more carbonation is desired ferment for one more day, noting that it will also become less sweet the longer it ferments.

4. After desired taste is reached, chill ginger beer. If you like, ginger beer can now be transferred to glass bottles with flip tops. Clean the bottles with dish soap, rinsing very well, then run the bottles through the dishwasher without soap. Note that fermentation will continue in the refrigerator at a slowed rate. Release gas from them daily to prevent glass bottles from exploding. Ginger beer will keep in the fridge for 1 week.

Ginger beer finished and bottled.

CHEF'S TIPS

  • Ginger beer will continue to become less sweet the longer it ferments, even in the refrigerator. If more sweetness is desired after a few days, simply mix together equal parts sugar and water and heat until sugar is dissolved; chill and add to ginger beer.