Saturday, July 16, 2011

{Recipe} DIY Ginger Syrup for homemade soda

My family has been trying to find healthier alternatives to traditional soda. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is not only horrible for you, but almost all of it is made from genetically modified corn - which we oppose on moral grounds. Plus drinking lots of extra calories is bad for you. Diet sodas aren't too much better. And with all the hub-bub going around about caramel coloring causing cancer, it's enough to make you give up soda altogether.

Except I'm addicted. I think it's the bubbles. I find plain club soda has a weird bitter taste so I still need it flavored somehow. And it needs to be inexpensive.

I've seen a few recipes for infused syrups that you can use to make homemade sodas floating around online about thought I'd give it a shot.  I love that I have 100% control over what goes into it and it's not pricey! It turned out pretty tasty, too, if I do say so myself. Plus I think it makes a fun inexpensive gift. So without further ado...

What You'll Need

  • 1 large piece of fresh ginger root
  • 2 cups organic sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • A fine mesh sieve or cheesecloth
  • Glass bottle(s) for storage and/or gift giving
Step 1: Slice the ginger root into quarter inch (or so) slices. This isn't an exact science...just chop it up, really

Step 2: Mix the sugar, water and ginger in a pot on the stove and bring to a boil. Once boiling, stir to make sure sugar is completely dissolved and remove from heat. Let sit for 30-60 minutes to steep and cool.

Step 3: Scoop the large ginger chunks out and discard or set aside for another purpose. Pour syrup through a fine mesh sieve or damp cheesecloth to catch any small bits. Store in a glass jar in the fridge for up to a month (I like to use reclaimed glass salad dressing or salsa bottles)

That's it!

Now here comes the fun part...
With a little fancying up this ginger syrup makes a great gift.

I'm using a reclaimed glass taco sauce jar that's been thoroughly washed. I also painted the lid black so it no longer says "taco sauce!" on it.

To label it, I glued some crumpled brown paper to the jar, wrote on it with a sharpie and tied it with a string.  I added a heart shaped tag that has the recipe for how to make fresh "ginger ale" with the syrup.

Speaking of the fresh ginger ale recipe....
Throw some ice in a glass, add about 2.5 Tablespoons of syrup (more of less to taste) and a cup of club soda. Really, it tastes best with a hint of lime, so add a lime wedge or try it with lime essence club soda. I tried the Talking Rain lime club soda with it and it was darn tasty.

That's all there is to it! Share it with a friend or add it to your list of easy, inexpensive culinary gift ideas for when the holidays come around.

I'm sharing with these fab parties. Please visit them if you want to more great projects or are interested in sharing your own:

A Crafty Soiree

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