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ginger beer – the 2006 vintage

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    I made the first new season ginger beer a few days ago and H and I had some yesterday afternoon. It’s mighty fine stuff. If you’re trying to give up Coke or Pepsi but still want a refreshing drink, this might be the summer drink for you. The following recipe makes five litres.

    You make ginger beer in two stages. First you make a “plant” and feed it until it ferments. Then you make the beer from this concoction.

    Ginger Beer Plant

    In a glass jar – a no.20 fowlers is perfect – place:

    1 dessertspoon of raw (or white) sugar. Raw sugar gives it a better colour.

    1 dessertspoon ground ginger – you can use raw ginger if you have it.

    ¼ teaspoon dry yeast.

    300mls rainwater, or tap water that has stood for 24 hours.

    4 sultanas – if you can get organic ones, do so, if not leave them out

    Stir this together and cover it with a cloth or milk jug cover. It needs air. Leave it to sit on the kitchen bench.

    Every day for 7 days, feed it 1 teaspoon ginger and 1 teaspoon sugar, and stir.

    To make the beer

    After 7 days you’ll see the plant has started to ferment. Get a clean piece of loosely woven cloth, or a clean cotton tea towel and place it over a bowl. Pour the ginger plant into the fabric and twist the top of the cloth to make it into a ball. Squeeze out as much of the liquid as you can in to the bowl.

    Dissolve 3 cups of sugar in 20 cups of water. Add juice of 2 lemons and the ginger mix. Stir and bottle in plastic bottles.


    Ginger beer can explode. It’s wise to bottle in plastic and not glass until you know what you’re doing.


    I have been making this for yonks and it’s never exploded or made the bottles puff out from too many bubbles.

    Once you’ve bottled the beer. Put the cap on and allow it to sit on the bench for about 3 days. This will help the fermentation along. If you notice the bottles puffing out, slowly release the lid to let the pressure off. When you put it in the fridge the fermentation will cease.

    After a couple of days put the ginger beer in the fridge and enjoy it when it is cold. This ginger beer is fizzy, very gingery and refreshing.


    Thanks, was just thinking about searching out a ginger beer recipe, and that recipe looks simple enough for me to follow… :tup:

    We don’t drink soft drink here so will have to hunt out a supply of plastic bottles!


    This looks great but I have a couple of questions.

    1. Can plastic milk bottles be used for storage?

    2. When you say to dissolve the sugar in water do you mean to heat it like a syrup? If so, does the mixture need to cool before the other ingredients are added?



    ree, you’re like us. I used two 1.25ml soda water bottles. They had been in the cupboard so long they’d gone flat. :uhoh: I also had a two litre cranberry juice bottle. I put the rest into an old glass apple cider bottle.

    Kate, yes, use the milk bottles as long as they are completely clean and free of any milk. I’d wash them and fill up with water and vinegar. Allow that to stand for a day and then rinse. They’d be perfect after that treatment. Make sure you treat the cap too.

    I didn’t make up a traditional sugar syrup with boiling water. I just put some water in a saucepan, heated it a bit and stirred until the sugar dissolved. Then I let it cool. Heat plays a part in that it speeds the fermentation along. Make sure that everything is cool when you bottle your brew and cap it.

    I meant to add earlier that if you don’t want a strong ginger flavour you can halve the ginger beer plant and use half for your beer. The other half you start feeding again in preparation for your next brew. we don’t drink so much of it, so I start from scratch each time. I think it’s nicer too with a strong ginger taste. Having said that, however, I think keeping the starter plant going for some time would develop some great flavours in the beer.


    Yummo, this is my very next project…. Thanks Forest!! :tup:


    Rhonda, when you say ground ginger do you mean the sort that you get in the herbs and spices section at the stupidmarket (can’t remember who said that but I loves it πŸ˜† ) or ginger from the fruit section that you’ve ground with a mortar and pestle?


    Cheryle xx


    you can use either, cheryle, but I use the powder. I buy mine from the bulk food store.

    I’m changing the above recipe. I just threw out three bottles that were like bombs. The brewers yeast gives it a much stronger taste than I like so I’m sticking with the dried yeast from now on. It gives the ginger a chance to show through.


    Hey Rhonda,

    This sounds very good, once I have got enough bottles I will give it a go, since giving up coke I have been drinking gingerbeer so I may as well make my own!


    good for you, janine. Yeah, it’s a good recipe. My previous batch was perfect. I just have to teach myself to not tamper with a good recipe. πŸ˜‰


    I made my first lot and it was ready for drinking on Sunday. I shared it round with my family and they thought it was tops. It is a great recipe. Not to sweet and not to gingery. I have orders from them already so I’ll be making this one often.:D



    Good for you, Ange. It’s a great summer drink to give visitors. Everyone I’ve offered it to has thought it was delicious and a special drink.

    While I was out yesterday, my son, who is a confirmed coffeeholic and coke drinker, drank a full bottle of the ginger beer. He loves it.


    Just what I was looking for, thanks Rhonda :hug:

    The manager of a neighbouring station, a really lovely older bloke named Tom, comes into the shop each week on mail day and buys Bundeberg Ginger Beer cos he says it settles his stomach/makes him feel better and today I thought to myself “I’ll bet there’s a recipe for that at ALS and I could make him some of the real gear”

    Thanks again, will let you know what he thinks of it…AFTER I get to town again to get the ginger :uhoh:


    Thanks for a great recipe, Rhonda!:tup:

    Can I ask – how long does it keep once you have made it? I think it would need to be kept in the fridge, right?


    Sounds delicious Rhonda. I wonder have you tried it with fresh ginger and how much extra did you use for that? I’m really looking forward to trying this :tup:


    I think this will be on the list of things to do when my partner goes away at the end of the month than it will be nice and ready when he returns.

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