Ginger Beer (Beer)

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A couple summers ago my wife brought me home a 6 pack of Crabbies ginger beer. I fell love with it. It was the perfect, light, sweet drink to quench my thirst on a hot summer day. Since I'm into home brewing I set out to make my own summer time ginger drink. I pulled from a number of recipes and references around the net got started. My first couple attempts involved growing a beer plant and fermenting the stew that created, which produced more of a ginger ale drink. Here I've done an actual brew.

NOTE: This recipe may produce alcoholic beverages. Drink responsibly, at your own risk, and only if you are 21 or older.

References

The Basics

Ingredients

  • 4.5 lbs of ginger
  • 4 lemons
  • 2 limes
  • 0.5 lbs sultanas (I used raisins)
  • 2 packs of champagne yeast
  • 1 Tbsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 2 packs of light malt extract (1 lb each)
  • 1 lb lactose
  • 1 lb brown sugar
  • 0.5 lb honey

Prep

I started by chopping the ginger, lemons, and limes in a food processor. I cut everything up small enough to fit in the chute, cut off anything that looked unappetizing, and threw it in peels and all.

Brew

  1. Boil 2 gallons of water
  2. Add lemons, limes, and ginger
  3. Bring back to a slow boil for 30 minutes
  4. Add malt extract, brown sugar, honey, and lactose
  5. Bring back to a slow boil for another 30 minutes
  6. Let the mixture cool to approximately 20 degrees Celsius and transfer to a fermenting vessel
  7. Add the nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, sultanas(or raisins), and cold water to make 5 gallons
  8. Stir the mixture vigorously to aerate and then add the yeast


Bottle

After fermenting for 2 to 3 weeks it's time to siphon to a clean bottling bucket and prepare for bottling. My first batch I fermented with all of the ingredients in the fermentation bucket. I had to remove the black cap off the racking cane and filter the output through a reusable muslin bag. Even then the line was prone to clogging, so I had to watch it and give a few taps every now and then. Once in the bottling bucket stir in 5 ounces of priming sugar and bottle. Let them carbonate for a week, then refrigerate and enjoy.


Enjoy and feel free to report any problems or suggestions to longet@spider.dnsdojo.net.