Thursday, May 12, 2016

Ginger Ale From Ginger Bug

Thanks to Kyle Christensen of Woodland Hills, Utah County, I can now enjoy my own ginger ale.  I lived in Detroit Michigan for a few years and there was a brand of ginger ale there that I loved          ( Schewpts?) but my own home-made tastes even better than that.  

To start you have to create a "ginger bug" in a glass jar like the one in my picture.

Put 2 cups unchlorinated water into a clean quart jar.  Add 1 TBS  chopped raw ginger and 1 TBS white sugar.  Next day add more chopped ginger, little bit more water and 2 tsp. sugar.  Do this for a week.  Cover the jar with coffee filter paper and secure with elastic.  
It should smell wonderfully gingery. The natural lactobacillus bacteria on the raw ginger have begun the fermenting process by consuming the sugar and the sugars in the ginger. 

Now you can make your "ale".  
For 2 gallons of Ginger Ale you will need:

2 - pieces of ginger that are about 6 inches long 
4 - 2 quart jar bottles or 2, 1 gallon jars
4  - cups of sugar
1  - cup of your strained  "ginger bug"
 almost 2 gallons of unchlorinated water.  

Mix part of the water with sugar to dissolve and divide between the 2 containers, add 1/2 cup "ginger bug" to each, fill with more clean water. Chop up the raw ginger and blend it at high speed in about 3 cups of the water. Add the blended "slurry" to the containers and fill with more water but leave about a cup of space from the top.   Put coffee paper caps on and secure with elastics.  Keep at room temperature for about 4-5 days.  It should get bubbly (by product of carbon dioxide)  and smell good.  There will be some residue or scum at the top but this can be scooped off when it is ready to pour off and strain.  Put strained  ginger ale into glass jars with tight fitting lids, label and date and keep in cold storage for another week.  

It is so good!   well worth the trouble and don't forget all that raw ginger is so good for you.  You can flavor the finished ale with some fresh lemon juice or other fruity flavors before storage.  

Note;  You can add some whey about 1 TBS  to each 2 quart jar to  insure there are enough lactobacillus to start the fermentation.  Also, if concerned about alcohol content, add a pinch of salt to each container helps keep down the alcohol content. But, it rarely gets above 1%.

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