Easy, peasy ginger beer

by goodnessis

It was my birthday a few weeks ago and to celebrate I had a few friends for dinner.  It was a bit tricky because our home is a building site at the moment, and how not to make it look like one was very tricky.  But with a beautiful table outside with many small vases of colourful daisies and sunflowers, big and small, and lots of candles everywhere, it looked magical and so full of golden light.

I also asked  my guests to bring a plate, so the cooking wasn’t so stressful.   I asked Noa to bring her spinach pie which is so delicately delicious with a buttery, melt-in-your mouth crust and a creamy, cheese filling dotted with spinach.  I provided her with a bag of kale, swiss chard and spinach that she steamed and put in this special pie she has perfected.   Anna and Leon made a bowl of  quinoa which they brought in a beautiful wooden bowl.  Leon had decorated it with a circle of purple flowers.  They also brought along a plum crumble and a mandal tapioca pudding decorated with mango slivers in a mandala design.  I added a green garden salad all fresh from the garden and a red lentil dahl and red lentil hummous.  I wish I had photos of all this, but the flash on my camera wasn’t working.   As it is Summer, I really wanted to make a wonderful refreshing drink before we sat down for dinner.   Something to quench our thirst and ignite our appetites.  I had made this ginger beer once before and it was delicious.  Refreshing, icy cold with a gingery, lemon sweet bite.   And it is so easy!

The original recipe came from Jamie Oliver’s cook book, “Happy Days with the Naked Chef”.

At the moment, I am in England for a month to escape the intensity of the heat in Israel.  I am hoping to come back to a very complete new and glorious dreamy kitchen.  Hmmm…that would be nice.  I am trying to finish up some of the posts that I have sitting in my drafts folder, so I can post while I am away.   But if not, I will try and post a photo or two of some delicious meal I have eaten along the way, or definitely new tastes and ideas when I get back.

In the meantime give this one a try.  It is really, really good!

Ginger Beer

Serves 4 – 6

140g fresh ginger

4 tablespoons light brown sugar

5 lemons

1 litre/1 3/4 pints soda water or sparkling mineral water

sprigs of fresh mint

slices of lemon

First of all you need to grate your ginger on a coarse cheese grater – you can leave the skin on if you like.  Put the ginger with its pulpy juice into a bowl and sprinkle in your sugar.  Remove the rind from 2 of your lemons with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife.  Chop in quarters and add to the bowl, and slightly bash and squash with something heavy like a rolling pin or pestle.  Just do this for 10 seconds, to mix up all the flavours.  Squeeze the juice from all 3 lemons and add it to the bowl.

Pour in your fizzy water or soda water.  Allow to sit for 15 – 30 minutes.  I actually put it in the freezer to sit, so it stays nice and cold.   I let mine sit for 30 minutes.  Taste.  You may feel that the lemons are slightly too sour, therefore add more sugar;  if it is slightly too sweet, add more lemon juice.  These amounts are always a little variable, so just follow your own taste buds.  Pass the ginger beer through a course sieve into a large jug and add lots of ice and lots of fresh mint.

Enjoy!

Goodness shared from Stacey