Homemade Ginger Beer

You guys might be wondering what motivated me to make my own ginger beer. I have Lindsay to thank for that. Do you guys know Lindsay? She’s the superstar behind the design of many many food blogs out there (mine included) thanks to her company Purr Design, she has written not one, but two cookbooks, and she posts regularly on her own food blog, Love and Olive Oil. For the past few months, she has been challenging herself in the kitchen and asking her readers to join in her challenges. For the month of May, she decided to tackle Homemade Ginger Beer. Since the Dark and Stormy is one of my favorite cocktails out there (I’ve even made Dark and Stormy cupcakes!), I decided I’d join in the party.

Homemade Ginger Beer

After reading Lindsay’s post, I decided to go with Jeffrey Morgenthaler’s recipe for homemade ginger beer. Since I have my beloved Zeus, I knew I’d have no issue procuring the fresh ginger juice. The only things I needed to purchase was a bottle to brew the ginger beer in and the champagne yeast used in the recipe. I decided to go with this 32 oz bottle with a flip top lid. I decided it would be perfect for the ginger beer and later for serving water out of when we have guests over.

Zeus the Juicer

Once the bottle and yeast arrived from Amazon, I set out to start my first batch of ginger beer. Since Jeff’s recipe was for 16 oz, I simply doubled it. However, I had underestimated how much ginger I would need for the 2 oz of ginger juice… I also realized at that point how difficult it was to count out 50 granules of yeast. And how SMALL of an amount of yeast that was. Deflated, I decided to try again in a few days.

Homemade Ginger Beer

While the days were passing, I started reading more of the comments on Jeff’s post with the recipe. Multiple people had commented that counting yeast granules was absurd and even if you did, it didn’t usually give the fizziness expected from ginger beer. Somewhere deep down in the comments, Jeff mentioned that he uses ~1/16 tsp of yeast per 16 oz bottle instead of counting out granules of yeast.

Ginger beer ingredients

So I set out again to make homemade ginger beer. This time, I made sure I had plenty of ginger on hand for juicing. I topped my mixture with the 1/8 tsp of yeast for my 32 ounces of ginger beer, shook it, put a lid on it and took it to the basement. Jeff mentioned that you can have bottles explode, so I wanted to store my ginger beer in a safe place while it fermented.

Homemade Ginger Beer

Exactly 48 hours later, I moved the ginger beer to the fridge and we tried it the next day. The verdict? Definitely worth making at home. Hands down, amazing. 32 ounces only made a couple Dark and Stormys so I look forward to making this again and playing around with the amount of lemon juice in the recipe. Some of the commenters on Jeff’s page even had ideas of adding honey or herbs like thyme.

kitchenchallenge-may

Thanks Lindsay for challenging me to make something at home that I never would have thought to make on my own! Be sure to check Lindsay’s blog to see how everyone else did.

One Year Ago: Raspberry Rhubarb Muffins and American Potato Salad
Two Years Ago: Chipotle Pork Stew
Three Years Ago: Chocolate and Peanut Butter Pops and Homemade Ding Dongs
Four Years Ago: Rhubarb Rolls
Five Years Ago: Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

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Homemade Ginger Beer

Ingredients:

2 ounces ginger juice
4 ounces fresh lemon juice, finely strained
6 ounces simple syrup
20 ounces warm water
1/8 tsp champagne yeast

1 32 oz bottle

Directions:

In your bottle, combine ginger juice, lemon juice, simple syrup, and water. Shake to combine.

Top mixture with yeast. Seal the cap securely, shake well, and store for 48 hours – no more, no less – in a warm, dark place.

After 48 hours have passed, refrigerate immediately to halt the process.

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37 Responses to “Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows”

  1. #
    1
    Megan — December 21, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    I love the red swirl in these. They look so festive! Homemade marshmallows are seriously so much better than store-bought.

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    Jen — December 21, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    Completely agree Megan. And the best part is they melt and get all gooey in the hot chocolate!

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    Meesh — December 21, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    gorgeous! and so festive. what a great idea.

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    Fun and Fearless in Beantown — December 21, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    These are awesome! I’m sure your friends and family will love this thoughtful gift!

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    Daisy — December 21, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    these are the prettiest marshmellows I have ever seen. you could make them for every winter season (throw some sparkles in for news years, green for st pattys. pastels for easter!) oh the possibilities.

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    Rachel @ Baked by Rachel — December 21, 2010 at 6:15 pm

    So pretty! I hear people talk about how easy it is to make homemade marshmallows all of the time – I’ve really got to make some.

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    dana — December 21, 2010 at 6:21 pm

    Peppermint marshmallows? I think this is the first time I am hearing about it. Anyway it sounds fun and looks yummy.

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    Blog is the New Black — December 21, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    Looks great!

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    Evan @swEEts — December 21, 2010 at 9:04 pm

    I bought all the ingredients for marshmallows but haven’t made them yet.. this peppermint variety sounds awesome though!

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    kitchenmisfit — December 22, 2010 at 2:38 am

    I really need to get off my butt and make some homemade marshmallows! No excuses!

    -Amanda

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    LimeCake — December 22, 2010 at 2:38 am

    These are so darned pretty, and festive! Happy holidays!

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    SomeSojourns — December 22, 2010 at 6:31 am

    holy clever. these look so yummy.

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    Anne @thefitbridesmaid — December 22, 2010 at 6:46 am

    Those look so professional. It’s amazing what a little red food coloring can do.

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    Caroline — December 22, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    These are beautiful! I have made marshmallows a few times, and only once have I had a problem with them.. I put them into an airtight container and came back about an hour later to find that they had been – at least what it looked like to me – weeping. I’m not sure what happened, I dusted them with powdered sugar after cutting, and thought I did everyting right. I was curious if anything like that has that happened to you before? These marshmallows look like perfection!

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    Dina — December 23, 2010 at 12:25 am

    those would be great in a cup of hot cocoa!

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    Ashley — December 29, 2010 at 10:37 pm

    Jen…these are GORGEOUS!! I keep meaning to try my hand at marshmallow making. These look divine!

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    Jen — January 2, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    Caroline,

    I have never had that problem myself. It sounds like there may have been a lot of humidity in the air? Was it during the summer? I haven’t made marshmallows during the summer yet, but that’s the first thing that pops to mind.

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    Stef at TooMuchToDoSoLittleTime.com — January 15, 2011 at 9:13 am

    I found your site from Pioneer Woman’s Group 3 photography assignment. Congrats on being selected!!

    I love the photo and am looking forward to trying your marshmallow recipe.

    I’m looking forward to looking at your other posts, too. 😉

    Stef at TooMuchToDoSoLittleTime.com

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    zzzy — March 11, 2011 at 12:45 am

    Where can one buy a marshmellow make/machine??

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    snippets of thyme — April 7, 2011 at 7:16 am

    I cannot wait to make these peppermint marshmallows at the holidays. They are so pretty and looks so nice in that hot chocolate!

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    Jo and Sue — July 15, 2011 at 7:50 am

    Your pictures look soooo amazing 🙂 I did a blog recently about marshmallows (If you are interested – http://joandsue.blogspot.com/2011/07/great-marshmallow-debate.html ) Homemade marshmallows are rediculously addictive!

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    Virginia — November 6, 2011 at 6:43 pm

    Important pre-holiday question: how big are the gift bags you use for your marshmallows &/or hot cocoa mix?  I’m looking at the “smalls” from KA (14.5″ x 6″), but I really have zero intuition for how that size translates to volume of, e.g, marshmallows. =)  thanks!

    • beantownbaker — November 8th, 2011 @ 8:26 am

      Great question. I will have to go home and check the size of the bags. I know I got them at Michaels. The marshmallows went into small bags that were almost a smidge too small and the hot cocoa went into larger bags. I’m sure that isn’t very helpful… Let me get back to you on that.

    • beantownbaker — December 19th, 2011 @ 9:00 pm

      Ok I didn’t have any of the bags left. Both of them were Wilton brand from Michaels craft store. Based on what I see online, it looks like the marshmallows were in a bag that was 3″x4″. They were a smidge small. The cocoa mix was in a bigger bag, looks like 4″x6″ and those were just the right size.

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    Sarah C — December 18, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    I’m not sure what I did wrong but these were a total disaster!  The marshmallow wouldn’t pour out of the bowl and seemed like it had already begun to set by the time I was taking it out (even though I only kept it in the mixer for about 13 minutes).  Do you think they were in the mixer for too long?  I was going by timing as well as thick/lukewarm but maybe it was still too long.  The bit of them that I could get into the pan wouldn’t spread so I couldn’t even use what I had because they would have been horribly shaped and not gift-worthy.  I ended up having to just dump everything in the trash.  I’m so disappointed because I was really looking forward to an easy homemade gift for co-workers.

    • beantownbaker — December 19th, 2011 @ 8:59 pm

      So sorry to hear that they didn’t turn out for you 🙁

    • LadyPerson — January 1st, 2012 @ 12:58 am

      You probably cooked the sugar syrup too long. I bet if you’d let them fully set, you’d have ended up with harder than normal marshmallows. Check your candy thermometer to make sure it’s accurate.

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    LadyPerson — January 1, 2012 at 1:01 am

    Sounds like you didn’t cook the sugar syrup long enough. They MUST get to the proper temperature, or the marshmallows won’t set properly. If the syrup didn’t cook enough, the resulting marshmallow will be too soft and won’t hold it’s shape properly. Cook it too long, and the marshmallows will be too hard when you want fluffy.

    • Jenny K., Colorado — November 29th, 2012 @ 3:04 pm

      I would like to add that when cooking candy to a certain temperature, you must take into account your altitude. I have not made these yet, but will adjust to my own 6,000 feet in altitude. For example, when making English Toffee, I adjust 8 degrees LOWER for the target temperature. Otherwise, it overcooks.You can Google “altitude adjustments for candy making” .

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    Molly — November 30, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Would a hand mixer work or would the marshmallows burn out the motor?

    • beantownbaker — December 1st, 2012 @ 9:38 pm

      I’ve never done it with a hand mixer, but I do know that my stand mixer gets pretty hot while it’s whipping up the marshmallows…

      • Mary Christmas — December 21st, 2012 @ 2:08 pm

        I made these last night with a simple handmixer & whisk attachment (Hamilton Beach® 6-Speed Hand Mixer)…worked great! It has a “bowl rest” so your arm doesn’t get too tired 🙂

        • beantownbaker — December 21st, 2012 @ 9:12 pm

          So glad it worked out for you!

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    KS — December 13, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Anyone know if an alternative syrup would work (like light brown rice syrup)? I want to make these but my son is allergic to corn. Thanks!

    • beantownbaker — December 15th, 2012 @ 9:40 am

      I have never tried a substitute. Maybe another reader will know. If you experiment and find something that works, let me know!

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    Mary Christmas — December 21, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    Delicious, and they look just like the picture!!

    To save your pan, lay down foil first, and then spray with cooking spray and the powder mixture as instructed. At the end, lift the foil out to dump the marshmallows on the cutting board.

    • beantownbaker — December 21st, 2012 @ 9:11 pm

      Great tip!

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