Ginger for a ‘Ale and Hearty Summer! :)

Cold glass of Ginger beer!

Summer’s slowly making itself felt and accompanying the summer heat, is summer nostalgia. It is the time of the year we start wishing (more than usual!) we were back to being kids and had three longggg months to fill with things to our hearts’ content! It’s also the time when we start reminiscing about childhood treats we have had. And nothing like a tall, cool glass filled with ice and ginger beer to get you started.

Ginger beer goes back a long way into childhood for all the people who have ever grown up on Enid Blyton.  All the perfect picnics that was ever packed by either Aunt Fanny or perhaps by Mrs.Hilton, Pip’s mom were incomplete till they found the bottle/s of ginger beer. Nothing was ever as perfect as a glass of ginger beer to quench either a disappointing hot day without clues or to celebrate the end of a mystery. There was something about a ginger beer that made it seem so ‘Grown Up’.. most likely the word ‘beer’ 🙂

So a sip of Ginger Ale/Beer was a childhood dream. It was as English as ham and bacon sandwiches ( remember that we are talking about early 90’s in India ) and seemingly impossible to get your hand on unless you traveled all the way to the seaside village of Kirrin.

Ginger is a tricky little spice. It’s an unassuming little fella who packs a power punch when it comes to the ways and benefits of it’s uses. Apart from being a prominent ingredient in Indian, Chinese, Korean and Japanese cooking, it’s also been a major power player in traditional medicines from all these cultures. Why? We did some research and found out that it can be used to cure stomach aches/upsets, to reduce pain of osteoarthritis, and may even be used in heart disease or cancer. Check out this site to see the amazing things this spice can do for your health!
Other Ginger trivia – Did you know that original word root of this spice roots actually owes itself to Tamil ‘Inji Ver’? Ginger is native to Asia where it has been used as a cooking spice for at least 4,400 years. Now that’s what we here at Zoink call ‘Old Spice’! 😛

And another thing we love about ginger is how versatile it is. It can be powered, pickled, boiled,sliced,diced, candied and best of all, made into Ginger Beer! There are so many versions out there but this one is our absolute favorite coz it’s the quickest one to make! Makes about 4 serving! 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup peeled, thinly sliced ginger
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups club soda
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
In a covered saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Add the ginger pieces and sugar and cover. Reduce the heat and allow it to simmer for five minutes. Remove from heat and allow it to sit for 20 minutes.  Strain the mixture and set aside the liquid. Once it has reached room temperature, cool it in the fridge. Although you don’t need the ginger pieces any more, you can keep them to make crystallized ginger.

Mix the ginger sugar water with two cups of cold club soda. Add the lime juice. Stir and serve.  So here’s your recipe for making your own home made ginger beer 🙂

Well, all that remains is for you is to kick off your shoes and sit back with a tall glass filled with ice and ginger beer and continue reminiscing about your childhood summers! 😀

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2 comments on “Ginger for a ‘Ale and Hearty Summer! :)

  1. Stephen Isabirye says:

    I too grew up on Enid Blyton’s books. in fact, I have an article, sub-titled, “Food in Blytonian Literature,” that covers aspects, including ginger beer, in my book on and about Enid Blyton, titled, the Famous Five: A Personal Anecdotage (www.thefamousfiveapersonalanecdotage.blogspot.com).
    Stephen Isabirye

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