soda water

easy peasy ginger beer

31st July 2010


It was my birthday a few weeks ago and to celebrate I had a few friends for dinner.  It was a bit challenging 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 dish, so the cooking wasn’t so stressful.  I asked Noa to bring her spinach pie which is so delicate and delicious with a buttery, melt-in-your-mouth crust and a creamy, cheesy 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 was presented in a beautiful wooden bowl – Leon had decorated it with a circle of purple flowers.  They also brought along a plum crumble and a tapioca pudding decorated with mango slivers in a mandala design.  I added a green garden salad all fresh from the garden and a simple dal and red lentil hummus.  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 wonderfully 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 ginger, lemon sweet bite.   And it is so easy!


ginger beer

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

Serves 4 – 6


140g fresh ginger

4 Tbsp light brown sugar

5 lemons

1-litre soda water or sparkling mineral water

sprigs fresh mint

slices lemon


1.  Grate the ginger on a coarse cheese grater – you can leave the skin on if you like. Place the ginger with its pulpy juice into a bowl and sprinkle with your sugar.

2.  Remove the rind from 2 of your lemons with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife, then chop the peeled lemons 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.

3.  Squeeze the juice from all 3 lemons and add it to the bowl.

4.  Pour in the fizzy water or soda water and allow to sit for 15 – 30 minutes.  I actually put it in the freezer, so it stays nice and cold.

5.  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.

6.  Pass the ginger beer through a coarse sieve into a large jug and add lots of ice and lots of fresh mint.


Goodness shared from Stacey

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