ManxCat’s superb ginger beer for ‘stay-at-home’ cyclists

Well, you gotta hand it to me this time.

Touring by bicycle AND lover of ginger beer!  Have I read too many Enid Blyton books?  Perhaps I have, but life is worth living to the most and well, this recipe is the best I have so far… Yes, SO FAR, Im always looking for new inspiration.

To the recipe!

Lovely root ginger ready for the Beer!

Lovely root ginger ready for the Beer!

This is an old recipe, and one used by my family when I was a child.  I have adapted it a bit, because these days one doesnt want to come up against a ginger explosion in the kitchen. Besides, I’m a grown up now, and I can partake in a tipple or two.

Things to have to hand:

Large saucepan

Wooden spoon


Bottles to bottle your brew in. (read footnote)


Raw fresh ginger (6 full tablespoons of grated fresh ginger root)

2 Lemons (juice only)

340g of the killer sugar

3/4 teaspoon Cream of Tartar

Brewers yeast.

Im using Gervin 1 yeast – 1teaspoon for the above as Im hoping for some alcohol in this lot.  So, if your riding in the London-Edinburgh-London Audax ride this summer and need a low alcohol ginger-beer, use half a teaspoon or less.  Better still wait until your dinner and kip time nears…


Into large saucepan put in 3 litres of tap water.  Into this lash into it all the ingredients except the brewers yeast (heat kills it off).  Bring the saucepan to a simmer, and ensure all the sugar has melted into the brew.

Allow to cool to room temperature.

Take your alcoholic reading…It will be very boring today, around the 1.050 on the hydrometer but hopefully in a few days time, it will be FAR more exciting!!!

Mine usually starts off at about 1.050.  Subtract the final number (mine was 1.010) from the starting number this gives you about 6.6 minus 1.3%v/v (reading from the hydrometer chart) therefore my batch of brew yields about 5%.  Not bad for just a weeks work!

Lovely ginger beer!

Lovely ginger beer!

Divide the brew up and pour into suitable bottles – ones used to holding gassy liquids.  Give a bit of a shake, leave out in a warm kitchen and watch the magic take place.  From time to time let some gas out.  After about a week (well, a week is anything from 5 days onwards in my book), strain off the ginger bits ‘n’ bobs and re-bottle.

Drink and bloomin well enjoy.  Great on a hot summers day.  Its also rather nice if you add this to some of my homemade lemonade cordial as it happens!  If 5% alcohol simply wont do…. add a slug of vodka.  Yummm

Foot note for bottles to pour your brew into.

Dont use glass!  Its horrible to clear up following an explosion, and if it sticks into you, you’ll bleed and be sore!

For anything remotely fizzy I use Sodastream plastic bottles.  OK a bit pricy, but I had them in the house and these chaps are well used to having strongly fizzy water stored in them.  You can use cleaned out lemonade or coke bottles, but I didnt have any when I made my brew.

Oh, and make sure everything is very clean.  I use either Milton (you know the stuff, you clean out babies bottles with it, if its good enough for them, its good enough for us.) or V.W.P which again is available from your wine brewing store.


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