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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5 Responses to “Homemade Holiday Gifts 2013”

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    1
    Sarah C — December 9, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    I’ve been brewing some vanilla extract since about August or September, and I can’t wait to give it to my friend who also loves to bake (and who, coincidentally, just pinned something on Pinterest about making her own vanilla – at least I know she’ll like it!). I need to find a nice bottle for it first though, and she’ll have to be OK that a label may be part 2 of her gift in January. I’m also going to make my sister some of the Fire Roasted Ketchup.

    Last year I did the salted caramel sauce for the same friend, and it was amazing. It took me 3 tries to get the taste right (I kept overcooking it and it tasted a little burnt) but it was totally worth it!

    • beantownbaker — December 9th, 2013 @ 5:48 pm

      Oh the homemade vanilla will be perfect for her! And, once you have one batch, you can just keep adding to it so you never run out of vanilla.

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    2
    Nutmeg Nanny — December 18, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    I’d love to be on the receiving end of these 😉 great ideas!

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    3
    pancho — January 3, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    Oh! I love making homemade gifts too! This year i made a ton of stuff: orange ginger marmalade, blueberry jam, lemon curd, vanilla sugar, caramelised walnuts, spiced honey, cardamom coffee beans and orange&clove loose leaf tea. Im working on my mustard and your recipe sounds nice!
    Love your blog, i always make your blueberry curd, yum!

    • beantownbaker — January 4th, 2014 @ 10:38 am

      Wow – you made a LOT this year! I bet people loved all the homemade gifts. Thanks for reading (and commenting!)

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