Saturday, July 13, 2013

Homemade Ginger Ale or Beer...or HOOCH

the non-alcoholic kind

positively the most satisfying best tasting ginger ale i've ever had in my life!
and it's HEALTHY. you might have guessed i'm on a quest for the best, funnest, most interesting and out of the ordinary drinks of the NON-ALCOHOLIC NATURE.

as stated in a previous post... 
the most important person at your summer party is the designated driver.
if that person is bored and ain't havin' a good time...if THAT person wants to go...everybody goes...

so take some time and make some special concoctions to keep the party going.

start with a "ginger bug"...wait...
make a "wort"...
add the "BUG" to the "WORT"...wait...
bottle and wait some more...
in about 2'll have  HOOCH
i like saying "hooch", but this is KID FRIENDLY.  i read that you'd have to drink a gallon or two of the stuff just to possibly equal 1 light beer.  i'm not an expert, i'm just going by what i have researched on quite a few different if you are worried, please do some more research and please let me know.


1 heaping Tbsp fresh grated ginger, (clean or peel knob)
1 large Tbsp of sugar
filtered water

fill a quart mason(sterilized) jar 2/3 full with filtered water.  add ginger and sugar, stir until the sugar dissolves.  cover, as shown, with canning ring and cheese cloth...or a rubber band and cheese cloth.
before you go to sleep, give it another stir.
in the morning add another 1 Tbsp ginger and 1 Tbsp sugar...stir.
repeat this for 3-4 days or until you see some action happening on the surface.  there will be some visible fermenting bubbling "action".  if this does not happen within 5 days, you might want to consider starting over.
NOTE...always try to use sterilized equipment so as not to introduce any odd bacterias...even when going in for a simple stirring.  just a good wash with antibacterial soap should do, but i sterilize the jar in the oven for 15 minutes at 220 degrees.


1 1/2 to 2 cups pure cane sugar
1/3 cup fresh grated ginger
2 qts filtered water

bring this mixture to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar.  let this steep (covered for  while) and come to room temperature.

NOTE...this is NOT AN ALCOHOL version.
i just like saying GINGER HOOCH

1 cup strained "ginger bug"
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice, strained
"ginger wort" from recipe above

add above items into 1 gallon glass jar.  fill the rest with filtered water.  stir to combine.  cover with cheesecloth and rubber band and let sit on the counter for 5 days.  taste it the 2nd or 3rd day.  does it need more sugar or lemon or ginger?
i added juice from 2 more lemons, a little more grated ginger and 1/8 cup sugar.
stir very morning and night for 3-7 days.
i waited 5 days

now strain the gallon of liquid into glass bottles with locking tops (as shown) Grolsch beer bottles.  it's cheaper to buy the Grolsch beer and have someone drink it then buy the bottles alone.  strain into pourable container then USE A FUNNEL.
let this sit somewhere safe...i read in a lot of blogs that said thiese could possibly explode...YIKES!   so, depending on the weather and where you live...keep a close eye on them.  i had one plastic bottle so that i could squeeze it to check the pressure and i tested a sealed glass bottle after 5 days. .  
after 5 days...a little effervescent fizz
after 9 days...a little more fizz

after 17 days of tender loving care....?
bubbles...beautiful  effervescent bubbles.  nothing like the fake store bought stuff.  these were very gentle sparkles and the flavor is far beyond...

this is best served "NEAT"...chilled sans ice


Sarah said...

My husband will LOVE this - every time we find a new ginger beer he's never tried before, he HAS to buy it. Now he can experiment with making his own!

Jules and Ruby said...

hi Sarah...i hope your husband gets into this...i'm IS like a science project. it fascinates me that i can make soda...and i don't really drink soda. lol. i just started one tonight that hopefully will taste like lemon ginger ale. i added in whey to make it "lacto-probiotic" . i think it might be done in a few days instead of weeks. i'll keep ya posted. thanks for the comment.

Shannon Szajna said...

OMG Your blog is EXQUISITE!! I'm so inspired by all of your pics and recipes!! AWESOME!

Jules and Ruby said...

hi Shannon...what a great comment. thanks so much. i hope to see you around again...J

Imogen said...

This is fantastic!

Tom Meredith said...

Hi, Just wondering if bubbles are supposed to appear in the glass jug like they did with the "Bug"? I have had my ginger beer in the jug for 2 days now and there are no bubbles, do you know if I messed it up somehow? Cheers :-)

Jules and Ruby said...

hi, i don't remember any major bubbling like the "bug". after 5 days you might see some white film and large bubbles on top...if i remember correctly. that will be strained out. the flavors meld and the sugars get eaten up, but there's not really any visible "action". taste it after 5 days and see if you like the sweetness. when you like the taste, then it's time to strain and bottle. the lock top bottles it starts to get the fizz like soda, but you can't really see that either. does that help? i only made this recipe once, but i will be making it again soon. i have been making a lot of "ginger ade" using whey that is a lot faster process. i will post it soon. BUT i was told by taste tester friends that they really enjoyed this recipe. let me know how it goes....J

Stephen Hutch said...

Great health blog!
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Ged said...

Hi Jules, I just came across this post. I was wondering if you had to "bleed" your bottles during the 17 days to let out some pressure? Mine expanded a lot and to avoid them exploding, I let out the gas a few times but even after 14 days the ginger beer was still pretty flat. Thanks!

Jules and Ruby said...

hey Ged...just say your comment. Hmmmm, let me think about that....i'm pretty sure i kept all but one (my tester bottle) closed up tight. did you use swing top type bottles? i bought some larger swing top and they did not hold bubbles as well as the grolsch beer bottles. now i only use the grolsch for ginger ale and kombucha. i'm going to start another ginger bug for more ginger ale this weekend so if there are any changes i will sure add to the post.
PS...had a bottle of this left in the back of the fridge and it sure came in handy when i was feeling ill last week. "real" ginger ale is the cure-all

Ged said...

Hi Jules, hope you are feeling better now! I was using soft drink bottles as I didn't have any grolsch bottles on hand. I think I might have had too much air in the bottles that meant the carbonation went into the air rather than the ginger beer. Did the carbonation get stronger as time went by? I'm trying another batch now with less air on top and put them in the fridge once the pressure built-up. This didn't take long as my ginger bug was very strong and continually bubbling like it was a freshly poured soft drink. I like your blog by the way.

Jules and Ruby said...

hey Ged...
dang...i keep missing comments. they used to get emailed to me...anyway, yes it does get more fizz as the days go by. i always have one bottle that i check. with the soda bottle (i assume it is pliable plastic) i read that you can feel the pressure by squeezing it. boy, i hope your next batch turns out. i think i will start a bug this weekend.
please keep me posted AND thank you so much.

llanarth said...

Yes, this is a nice recipe. There will be some alcohol in here though because of the fermentation process. Although it will be pretty low, it really depends how long it's left to ferment.

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