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Ginger Beer Recipe
Home-made ginger beer is unbeatable, but first you have to make a 'ginger beer plant'.
There are various proprietary kits available - mainly from farm shops, and such-like, but these are unnecessary if the following steps are followed.
It's important that no wild yeasts are introduced to your brew, so all bowls and utensils should be sterilised.
This can easily be done with a baby's bottle sterilising solution (such as Milton) - just follow the manufacturers directions.
For 4.5l/8 pints:
1 sachet of Dried ‘Easy-bake’ Yeast, available from most grocers
A 2 kilo bag of Caster Sugar – (you won’t need all of it)
9 rounded teaspoons (35ml) Ground Ginger
The juice of 2 Lemons
About 4.5l/8 pints Water
1. Boil 565ml/1 pint of water, and then allow it to cool to 21ºC/70ºF.
2. Add the yeast granules and 2 rounded teaspoons of both ginger and sugar, stir well in.
3. Cover this mixture with a saucer or cling film, and keep in a place to maintain a roughly similar temperature – and airing cupboard is ideal, but the temperature shouldn’t rise above 30ºC
4. Add 1 teaspoon of sugar and a similar quantity of powdered ginger every day for a week, gently stirring it in.
5. After 7 days, strain the ginger beer plant through a fine sieve into a second bowl and return the residue back to the original one.
6. Boil 1.1 litres/2 pints of water in a saucepan able to hold at least 4.5 litres/8 pints – add 680g/1½ lbs of caster sugar, and stir until it’s dissolved. Leave for a few minutes, then add the juice of the 2 lemons, followed by the ginger beer liquid from the bowl. Then allow this to cool to 21ºC/70ºF .
7. Add a further 2.8 litres/5 pints cold water.
8. Mix thoroughly, then bottle in sterilised bottle.
9. Keep for 7 days, before drinking.
The process can be started again, by adding 1 teaspoon of sugar and ground ginger to the plant (no extra yeast is necessary).
After the 7 days are up, make as before, but the remaining plant can be halved, so next time you’ll have two plants – this can be continued until you have no more enthusiasm, or space for more plants.