You may remember that in the marmalade recipe I started a "side quest", basically liquor production.
This process I'm about to describe works for a variety of types of liquor.
Today I'll show how to do ginger liquor, a fantastic digesting aid.
First you need to buy pure drinking alcohol.
Usually what's for sale is a grain based, 190+ proof spirit.
Buy some fresh ginger, about 11oz will do for a bottle (300g)
Clean the ginger
Then chop it up in little pieces
Remove some alcohol from the bottle, to account for displacement
Dump the ginger in the bottle
Store in a cool and dark place for around 20 days.
If you store it for longer, the liquor will not become more flavorful, but it will become more spicy. This may not be a bad thing for you (it isn't for me).
After time has passed, you have to dilute the beast.
This is done with syrup (water + sugar).
You basically let boil some water with sugar in it for a few minutes (3-4 is enough) and you're done.
I'm not a sweet person, so my personal sweet spot is 3 parts of sugar for 10 parts of water, by weight.
The traditional Italian recipe calls for 3 parts of sugar and 4 parts of water.
Once the syrup is cool, you can mix it with the alcohol.
Again here strength is a matter of taste, but I would not go below 55-60 proof nor above 100 proof.
Worth noting: alcohol content and sugar content have both direct correlation with the stability of the syrup-alcohol mix.
So if you both go low on sugar and low on alcohol the resulting liquor could have a tendency to separate.
There is no negative effect other than the fact it might be visually unappealing.
My favorite doses are
10-3 water-sugar by weight
Other than ginger, you can do the same exact process with many ingredients.
Just dump those in pure alcohol for a while and then mix with water/sugar syrup.
- lemon peel for limoncello.
Use untreated lemons, and try use only the yellow part of the lemon skin (white is bitter).
You need the peel of 7-10 lemons for each liter (quart) of pure alcohol.
I suggest 40 days in cool dark place.
- bay leaves.
About 20 bay leaves per liter of alcohol.
Also 40 days
- any type of berries
They have to fill about 1/4 of the bottle, fill the rest with pure alcohol.
Here is the result of today's bottling.
Left two bottles is limoncello, right is ginger.