After my sudden appreciation for bitter orange, I've had yet another taste shift. I never cared particularly for the taste of ginger. I didn't mind it doing its thing in the background in a stirfry but stem ginger or ginger sweets never did anything for me. That was until my recent visit to London. My uncle had no other soft drink option than Waitrose own brand ginger ale. And on a particularly pleasant spring day some thirst quenching was in order. And you know what? It was delicious , first with a dash of fresh OJ and later all by itself.
So back home in the Netherlands I proceeded to buy a bottle of Royal Club ginger ale. Which was a giant disappointment. There was not a hint of ginger to detect. Schweppes was better but still meek in comparison with the Waitrose version. So the only solution was to make some myself.
A quick search of the internet provided the basic recipe which I tweaked to my liking. This recipe makes a very sweet very strong ginger ale that is best diluted to your own taste with some soda water for extra bubbles.
Lets just say that I know what I'll be drinking this summer.
- table spoon of grated fresh ginger
- juice and zest of 2 small or 1 big lemon
- juice and zest of 1 lime
- one small piece of lemon grass
- 150 g cane sugar
- knife tip yeast
- 1 litre water
Grate the ginger, I don't bother peeling it. Zest the lemon and lime.
Bash the lemon grass with something heavy. Add everything including the sugar and yeast to a 1 litre bottle and top up with water.
Swirl everything around a bit to help the sugar dissolve. Now keep it in a warmish place for 2 days to let the yeast ferment the drink a bit. The fermentation will provide a very light tingle, so I like to use soda water to dilute the drink and add extra fizz. Pour through a strainer to remove the sediment and drink ice cold and diluted to your taste.