Ginger Beer

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Maricel

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Hi, I'm new to this brewing lark and live in a part of the world where brewing equipment, supplies, and environment are really stacked against me.

I want to make some alcoholic ginger beer, probably around 5% and not too sweet, but not dry.

I want to use as simple a recipe as possible, ie ginger, sugar, water, lemon juice, and bread yeast.

Can I get away with this?

If so, can someone help me and add quantities to the ingredients list for making 5-litre batches.

I also have an old Hydrometer that I inherited. It actually has 'Made in England' stamped on it lol

I have no idea what my starting and finishing SG should be, and I need some help there.

Also, the ambient temperatures are always between 25 and 35 C at this time of the year. I have an old chest freezer that I can change the thermostat in order to make a fermentation cabinet, but again, I have no idea of ideal fermentation temperatures for this brew.

Thank you in anticipation,

Nelson
 

Maricel

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Is it best to use new or old ginger to make alcoholic ginger beer?
old-and-young-768x432.png
 

Andrew Booth

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1kg Fresh Ginger
Juice and zest of lemon and orange
Citric acid
1kg sugar
Use champagne yeast for extra fizz

Boil ginger in water for 30 mins
Add the juice and zest at 30 mins and boil for further 15 minutes
Add the sugar and dissolve
Add a teaspoon of citric acid when cooled to 22 degrees
Ferment for two weeks
Bottle or keg for two weeks with Carb Drops or batch prime (calculators online)
Enjoy when you see yeast deposit.
 

Mikey Pee

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Thanks for posting the recipe Andrew. It sounds nice and easy and I think I'll have a go myself. Can I just double check your quantities are for 1 gallon / 5 litres? Cheers, Mike
 

Hop_it

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I've made alcoholic ginger beer a couple of times. Once with a recipe similar to AB's suggestion, and once with a lightly hopped simple pale ale wort. They both worked out fine, and were quite drinkable . . . . . However, they both fermented out very dry indeed. So, if you want some residual sweetness then you will have to find another way to achieve that. I have thought about using some lactose in the recipe, but I've not tried it yet, so I can't offer any suggestions as to how much to use, and how it might influence the flavour 🤔
 

Andrew Booth

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I’ve used this recipe in a few different ways including boiling up the grated ginger and adding the resulting liquor and flesh into a fresh wort to make a Ginger bitter was quite nice indeed. One of the ways I made the ginger beer sweeter was to add brewing sugar dissolved in water to the fermenter on day 10 it did make it a bit sweeter.
 

Mikey Pee

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Interesting to hear about your versions using ale wort. I'm fairly new to brewing and have only done country cider before and this is my first attempt at ginger beer. I love ginger but bought ginger beer / ale is always way too sweet for me and not enough ginger kick! Hence I was keen to try AB's recipe along with some extra ingredients inspired by other forum recipes and what I had in the cupboard! Here's what I did:
350g chopped fresh ginger
5 litres of spring water
Skin of 3 lemons
Juice of 3 lemons
6 dried red chillies
6 cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 cup raisins
2 vanilla pods
1.5 teaspoons of Cream of tartar (1x 5g sachet) Too much??.
200g white sugar
200g dark brown sugar
1 serving spoon of molasses / black treacle
1.5g Lalvin EC-1118

OG = 1.035 @ 64f

I gently boiled all the ingredients apart from sugar and yeast for 15 mins with a third of the water. I then sieved the juice and simmered the ingredients again for 15 mins with the next third of water and repeated for the last third. Probably over complicating things but it certainly worked in getting a powerful smelling liquid! I dissolved the sugar and treacle while the water was still warm and pitched the (re-hydrated) yeast once cooled enough. It took about 36 hours to get going but is now bubbling away in its bucket. It's actually tasting good already and it is quite fiery! Hard to tell whether the heat is from the ginger or the chillies but I did want it to pack a punch! I plan to rack into a DJ and let it ferment to dry and then bottle with a little priming sugar. I like really dry cider etc but if the GB ends up too dry I'll probably try adding a splash of ginger cordial or lemonade when serving (I'm not brave enough yet to try pasteurising bottles). Any thoughts?
 

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