This is a blog my son did regarding his tried and true Ginger Beer Recipe.
Over the past few years I have been brewing this Ginger Beer and tweaking here and there to get the best results possible.
This recipe makes about 15 bottles.
Plant tools: 1 litre jar (Roughly a quarter of a gallon) 1 Metric Cup measuring Cup (Roughly 8 fluid ounces or exactly 250 millilitres) 5ml teaspoon
Plant ingredients: 8 sultanas (Raisins for you non limeys) 2 metric cups of water (Roughly 16 fluid ounces or exactly 500 millilitres) 2-4 lemons (depending on size and juice yield. You want about a cup of lemon juice) 1 rough teaspoon of lemon pulp 4 rounded teaspoons of sugar (Usually white. Haven’t tried with brown or raw) 2 heaped teaspoons of ground ginger 1 level teaspoon of yeast *
Place the 8 sultanas in the 1 litre jar. Then juice roughly 1 cup of lemon juice and add to jar. Scrape out roughly 1 teaspoon of lemon pulp (the flesh that is left behind but not the white or the rind) and add to jar. Next, put the 4 rounded teaspoons of sugar, 2 heaped teaspoons of ginger and the 1 level teaspoon of yeast into the jar. Now dump the two cups of water into the jar and stir with the teaspoon. Place the lid on firmly and place out of direct sunlight but still to get some warmth. I like to make up a small chart on a scrap of paper similar to this and tape to the front of the jar:
Say you made it on the 2nd of September, then you would write on it.
“2 teaspoons of ground ginger. 4 teaspoons of sugar.
5th  6th  7th  8th  9th  10th  11th  “ I would then, wait three days and start adding the ginger and sugar as said on the chart. Ticking off the days as I go.
After adding for a week the beer is ready to be brewed. It can be left for several more days if you don’t have the time to do so immediately but I wouldn’t leave it longer than a week.
A bucket 1 Metric Cup measuring Cup (Roughly 8 fluid ounces or exactly 250 millilitres) A measuring jug with a spout. Usually in millilitres. A wooden spoon A funnel Kettle Rubber Gloves Sanitiser 15 bottles with caps Fine mesh cloth/Muslin cloth
1 Ginger beer plant 4 Metric Cups of sugar 4 Metric Cups of boiling water 28 Metric Cups of cold water 4 large lemons
Before you brew you need a bucket. I like to buy a cheap new bucket or use a special beer brewing bucket for this. I think sterilise everything. I like to use sodium percarbonate with about 4 litres of boiling water.
Put on your rubber gloves. I like to give them a wash before starting so rub some soap on them and wash them like you would your hands. You need the gloves because if you are using things like sodium percarbonate, when added to water it converts to hydrogen peroxide, which isn’t nice to get on your skin. It usually isn’t industrial strength but we do want to be safe. First put all your bottles near your sink. Put your bucket next your sink. Pour the water into the bucket and then added the sanitiser as directed on the bottle. Leave to sit for about ten minutes. Place your funnel to float in the sanitiser along with the bottle caps. Then scoop up some of the sanitiser and pour all around inside your sink. Next, grab a bottle, scoop up some more sanitiser and pour it into the bottle, you only need to fill it about a fifth of the way. Then slowly rotate the bottle while starting to turn it on it’s side so eventually the entire inside surface has come in contact with the sanitiser. Pour down the drain and repeat until all bottles are sanitised.
Run the outside of the bottles under cold water, then fill them with water, shake, and empty. Then get your caps out of the bucket and put them in the jug. Rinse both in one shot. Then rinse the funnel and set them all to one side. Maybe on a towel.
Now all you need to do is to empty the bucket of sanitiser. I like to do the same as I do with the bottles. Tilt it kind of on it’s side so the water starts to pour out and rotate so all the sides get covered. After a few revolutions pour the remaining sanitiser out and rinse with water. You can take your gloves off now too as the next section needs your actual hands.
The next section is rather easy.
Pour 4 Metric cups of sugar into the bucket followed by 4 Metric cups of boiling water. Stir until almost dissolved. Juice your 4 lemons into the bucket through a strainer. Then, through a fine mesh or muslin cloth, filter your ginger beer plant into the bucket. Bunch up the corners, twist it a few times and give the blob a fair squeeze. You want to get all the liquid out so it’s all crumbly.
Now, start pouring in your 28 cups of cold water giving it a stir every four or so. When you have finished it is ready to bottle.
All you have to do now is scoop it up with your jug, place the funnel into the neck of the bottle and pour in. Leave about 2-3 inches of air in the top as an exploding bottle isn’t as cool as it sounds. Screw the cap on firmly and make sure no air can escape**.
Next, place in a box and put in a warmish place. One thing I learnt is that heat is vital to the carbonation process. If you are making this in winter put the box about 2-3 meters in front of your heater or in the same room as a fireplace. If it’s the summer you can leave it in your garage or laundry.
Check after 3 days to make sure they haven’t exploded. If they are rock hard then they are ready to drink, however I like to leave them for about 4-5 days to get a few extra bubbles. But that’s up to you.
Now chill the bottles and enjoy your new batch of Beastie Brew Ginger Beer.
* Can be any yeast. I tend to use bread yeast but if you have brewers yeast available you could probably use that. If you are really game you could try cultivating wild yeast by instead of placing a lid over your jar, place a clean sheet of fabric, mesh or muslin cloth over the top and secure it with an elastic band. This will allow wild yeast to enter but not insects and dust. (I haven’t tried this way so I can’t guarantee it to work. I have only heard of others success)
** THIS IS VITAL. If you are reusing soda bottles, before you start test each cap on each bottle by tightening the cap as hard as you can and squeezing to see if any air comes out. Personally I prefer to buy new caps every 4-5 brews to refresh the seal on them and prevent a bad batch.
I, Ian Campbell, do no claim any copyright over this recipe. It’s so old no one really can. All I offer here is my personal experience and knowledge for you to use anyway you wish. This recipe, and the additional knowledge I give to you, is free. Gratis Libre. No charge, no restrictions. You can do what you wish with it. Print it, change it, share it.
You can find Ian's recipe at Pocket Balance where he has started blogging about his love of science and technology.