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frigidlizard

Ginger reduction for use in beverages

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I am trying to recreate some drinks from my favorite local restaurant. In place of ginger ale they use soda water and a housemade ginger reduction. They make some really delicious spicy cocktails and soft drinks with it. So far I have been getting okay results from simmering sliced peeled ginger in filtered water for 10-15 minutes, then straining and reducing the liquid to the desired color and strength. I am wondering though, if there's a better way. It seems as though I'm getting a lot of pungency without concentrating the actual flavor very much. When I search online for "ginger reduction" all I seem to find are recipes for savory asian sauces. I've considered trying to "juice" the ginger, but I am at a loss as to how. Anyone have any experience or ideas they would care to share?

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There are a number of brands of ginger juice on the market, but it's not cheap. I've seen reports that folks have had luck at 'Health Food' stores. If they have a juice bar/commercial juicer and sell fresh ginger, you may be able to talk them into juicing your purchase.

Have yet to try it, but I'm intrigued by the recipe for Ginger Syrup at the end of Jeffrey Morgenthaler's latest blog post...basically, combine equal parts roughly chopped ginger, sugar, and boiling water in a blender, then fine strain.

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No juice bars or health food stores for many a mile, but that blender method looks promising, I'm going to try it this weekend. Thanks! :)

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Do your Google search for ginger shrub.

Marvelous! This has opened up a whole new avenue for me to pursue. Thank you very much.

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Nitrogen cavitation (i.e. the iSi charger method) is pretty effective at extracting flavour from thinly sliced ginger, plus it's quick.

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Do your Google search for ginger shrub.

Marvelous! This has opened up a whole new avenue for me to pursue. Thank you very much.

I realize you want to make your own, and that a shrub might not be exactly what you're going for, but this company makes a terrific ginger shrub. I always have some on hand to add to various liquids to make cocktails, fizzes, etc.:

http://www.napadistillery.com/Tait-Farms-Ginger-Shrub-p/tai-gin.htm

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Thanks for the recommendation. I do like making my own ingredients, but I've never tried a shrub before, so I'd prefer to buy a bottle and see how it tastes before I try making it. Thanks again.

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To make your own ginger juice, just finely grate ginger then press against a sieve to extract the juice.

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I candy my own ginger at work for confectionry purposes. As you might be aware, candying consists of steaming or blanching the ginger for about an hour, then soaking it in increasingly higher levels of sugar syrup for a period of about 14 days. The purpose of course is to preserve the ginger, which is, theoritically "embalmed" in sugar.

Yeah, yeah, you ask, what's this all about?

The syrup.

The syrup is left over from the candying process and it is intensely flavoured.

I use this for drinks at home, or I boil off the water and have ginger flavoured sugar that I use for baking.

I do the same thing with ornage and lemon peel.

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I've never liked the boiled ginger "tea" recipes. I juice ginger in a juicer and then make simple syrup. 1:1 ginger juice to syrup by volume, bring to 165-175F. Very concentrated flavor, and it doesn't get a cooked/boiled taste, but still bright and fresh.


Edited by JMForester (log)

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I've never liked the boiled ginger "tea" recipes. I juice ginger in a juicer and then make simple syrup. 1:1 ginger juice to syrup by volume, bring to 165-175F. Very concentrated flavor, and it doesn't get a cooked/boiled taste, but still bright and fresh.

JM, what do you use this syrup for? Someone bought me Morris Kitchen Ginger Syrup (and their Preserved Lemon Syrup) and I'm looking for good cocktail uses for it.

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JM, what do you use this syrup for? Someone bought me Morris Kitchen Ginger Syrup (and their Preserved Lemon Syrup) and I'm looking for good cocktail uses for it.

You will find a bunch of ideas in the Ginger thread.

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I was at Craft and Commerce last night (your town, frog), and the bartender made my daughter an awesome ginger mocktail with their house ginger syrup, lime, and seltzer water. I'm pretty sure he said they mix ginger juice with simple syrup.

BTW, it was a very nice experience. Great bartender, very good food (particularly the roasted bone marrow), and good cocktails.

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I was at Craft and Commerce last night (your town, frog), and the bartender made my daughter an awesome ginger mocktail with their house ginger syrup, lime, and seltzer water. I'm pretty sure he said they mix ginger juice with simple syrup.

BTW, it was a very nice experience. Great bartender, very good food (particularly the roasted bone marrow), and good cocktails.

Excellent; I am glad that you liked that place. It's definitely worth checking out. It's a great place for brunch too, preferably accompanied by a bowl of one of their excellent punches. If you get a chance, I would love to hear what else you tried there (in the San Diego or Drinks discussions so we don't hijack this one).

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Have yet to try it, but I'm intrigued by the recipe for Ginger Syrup at the end of Jeffrey Morgenthaler's latest blog post...basically, combine equal parts roughly chopped ginger, sugar, and boiling water in a blender, then fine strain.

I'm always hesitant to make ginger syrups because 1) I don't have a tool that can easily juice ginger and 2) any steeping usually results in significantly muted flavor a day or two later. Usually for things like a Penicillin I'll just muddle ginger slices to achieve the same effect. I gave the method mentioned on the Morganthaler blog a try and am happy to say the syrup still has a lot of bite on day 5, plus it was really easy to make.

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I recently used ginger essential oil and it worked great in drinks. Remember when you use an essential oil that it is much, much stronger and you will only need a drop or two. At the risk of being spammy, you can find ginger oil on my website www.mydoterra.com/debraallen.

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Kevin Liu (society member) has a great recipe on his blog - he adds a cayenne tincture to replicate the burning sensation of the ginger, allowing to retain its strong flavour over time.  

 

You can find it here:

http://craftcocktailsathome.com/2012/07/recipe-spicy-ginger-soda-that-stays-strong-over-time/

 

I made a dark and stormy last night using this recipe and an iSi whipper, it was one of the best I've ever had. 

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To make your own ginger juice, just finely grate ginger then press against a sieve to extract the juice.

 

Or wrap the grated ginger in a square of cheesecloth, and wring out the juice thru the cheesecloth.

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I'm working on a cocktail that will include a ginger liqueur. And I thought I'd make my own, because how hard could it be? But getting good ginger flavor has been challenging. I get the heat, but not much else.

 

I tried a method based on a recipe on Serious Eats:

90g ginger (sliced thin) / 375ml water, simmered 20 minutes.

Then added to equal volume of brandy and some other seasonings, and steeped 48 hours.

 

Then I tried a method from Modernist Cuisine:

90g ginger (sliced thin) / 375ml water + 375mm brandy,  cooked sous-vide 60°C for 4.5 hours.

Then other seasonings added and steeped for 48 hours.

 

I assumed cooking sv would keep all the arromatics in, but the differences between the methods aren't huge. Both are more heat than flavor. Flavor from orange zest actual dominates. 

 

From what I've since read, you can increase the flavor-to-heat ratio of garlic with cooking. Some options would be:

1) roast the garlic first

2) sv at a temperature closer to boiling

 

Any other ideas?

 

Is there a potential problem with vapor preasure of a 20% alcohol solution being cooked sv in a jar at 90+°C?

 

 

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My instinct would be to try candying the ginger first then infusing that into your base liquor by whatever method. 

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You might consider using a fine microplane to shred the ginger and maximize the surface area exposed to the liquid.  It's what I've done to make non-alcoholic ginger syrup.

And it certainly speeds up extraction of citrus zests for limoncello and the like.

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I agree with blue_dolphin. The fresh juice goes a long way. Use use the grater part of this little treasure from the Japanse 98cent store.

IMG_0493.JPG

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