IT’S MULE SEASON!
Purchasing ginger beer from a grocery store can be expensive, and the packaging is over the top (glass AND cardboard). Beyond that, I haven’t found a store bought ginger beer that balances ginger bite with sweetness. Because of this, I have opted to start homebrewing ginger beer!
It’s cheap, produces zero waste, and is customizable.
CLASSIC MOSCOW MULES
Prep time: 30 minutes
Fermenting time: 24-36 hours
Author: Envi Eats
Type: Beverage, Cocktail
HOME BREWED GINGER BEER
- 8 cups water
- 1 lemon, juiced*
- 1/4 cup freshly grated ginger
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp dry yeast
SPICY SIMPLE SYRUP
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup honey (or other natural sweetner, such as agave or cane sugar)
- 1 knob ginger
- 1 cup home brewed ginger beer
- 1/4 lime, juiced
- 2-4 tbsp honey simple syrup
- 2 ounces vodka
- Fresh lime wedge for garnish
- Add 4 cups of water, the juice of one lemon, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, and 1/4 cup of grated ginger to a pot and bring to a full boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium and add the sugar, stirring to dissolve it. After the sugar dissolves completely, add the rest of the cold water (4 cups), and allow the mixture to cool completely.
- Once the mixture has reached room temperature, stir in the yeast and cover the pot with a towel. Allow the yeast to rise in a dark, undisturbed place for 2-3 hours.
- Add the mixture to a 64 oz growler, or to any 2-liter container, making sure to leave a few inches of head space for the carbonation to occur.** Store the bottle(s) in a cool, dark place for 36-48 hours, occasionally checking the the brew for carbonation build-up. You’ll know when the ginger beer is fully carbonated when you hear a hissing noise.***
- Store the ginger beer in the refrigerator to chill and to significantly slow down carbonation.****
- For the spicy simple syrup, cut ginger into matchsticks, and combine all ingredients in a small pot. Boil over high heat, then reduce to low, and simmer for 5 minutes. Pour the reduced simple syrup into a glass jar for serving.
- To make a single Moscow Mule, add 1 cup of ginger beer, 1/4 of a freshly squeezed lime, spicy simple syrup (use more for a sweeter drink), and 2 ounces of vodka to a copper cup full of ice. Garnish with a lime wedge.
*I typically use 1 Meyer lemon, but any lemon will work great.
**Carbonation occurs as a byproduct of metabolism when yeast consume sugars and oxygen. Using an air-tight container for carbonating will trap the CO2 byproduct in the ginger beer, making the resulting beverage fizzy. By leaving a few inches of head space in the container, the built up CO2 in the ginger beer will have a place to escape once the pressure in the bottle is released. Too much head space will lead to an uncarbonated beverage, and too little head space will likely make the bottle explode.
***CAUTION: bottles will explode if left to carbonate for too long. As CO2 is produced by the yeast, it will carbonate the liquid. Once pressure is reduced (by twisting the cap), the CO2 will be released from the ginger beer in the form of tiny bubbles. If the ginger beer is over carbonated, the liquid could explode from the container when the pressure is released. WHEN RELEASING PRESSURE FROM THE CARBONATING BOTTLE, DO NOT POINT THE CAP AT YOUR FACE, AS IT COULD PROPEL FROM THE BOTTLE AT A HIGH SPEED. I suggest always releasing pressure over the sink, in the off chance that the beverage is over carbonated.
****Metabolism speeds are greatly reduced in cooler temperatures. By placing the bottle in the refrigerator, you will essentially be stopping yeast metabolism, thus halting carbonation.
Ginger beer recipe adapted from The Roasted Root.
Let us know what you think by posting to Instagram #EnviEats