Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Stupendous Syrups

Today was a fun day- playing in the kitchen in between doing loads of washing from our trip and catching up with the garden.
Today was a fun day!
Left to right: Bitters, Tonic Syrup, Ginger Syrup, Cola Syrup and Ginger biscuits.
I had been neglecting my Bitters and needed to do the next step (admittedly a bit delayed but that's fine- its not like it could go off with so much alcohol in it!).  
Its been so gloriously warm here that I decided to make some cordials/syrups to go with soda - a nice break from heavy homebrews!

Bitters step 2. Straining the chunks from the alcohol ready for soaking in water

et voila - Ready for another week of soaking (strained alcohol on the right - soaking in water on the left)

Tonic Syrup:
The last 2L of Tonic syrup certainly went quickly! so it seemed appropriate to make more whilst doing the next step with the Bitters. I stuck with the recipe from batch no.2 as I really liked the lemony/juniper flavours.
Cola Syrup: 
So I don't really like Coke, unless its with rum that is - however I was keen to have a play and try out this recipe adapted from Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain, you can find it here .  We luckily still had some dried lavender from our Christmas lavender harvest at Mums.  I love any recipe that uses freshly grated nutmeg - it smells so damn good! 
Pretty Spices, a bit dubious about using lavender but it smells nice already!
It was quite easy to follow - similar to the other syrups - boil the spices- then add to a premade syrup. I didn't have any caramel colour but you can't taste colour so I didn't mind.    I added a little more fresh ginger to taste - you may note below that I love ginger :).
 According to my housemate it tasted like backstreet asian cola whatever that means (must be the star anise).
Much lighter colour than normal coke- also in my opinion yummier as it tastes like flowers :) !
Gingerbeer Syrup: 
I've made gingerbeer numerous times and invariably they end up tasting ridiculously alcoholic-delicious but deadly.  Having a yummy Bundaberg gingerbeer at lunch also tweaked my inspiration and armed with a massive chunk of ginger I also began a ginger syrup for a non-alcoholic version. 
3 cups of water 
1/2 cup of grated ginger (from a knob the size of my fist) 
1 tsp of citric acid 
I simmered them for 15 minutes and then added about 2 tbsp of grated fresh ginger for that little bit of zing before straining out the chunks 
I added some syrup made from 3/4 cup of white sugar and 3/4 cup of water to the ginger tea. The cordial isn't very sugary but has an awesome heat behind it! Perfect for adding to soda, rum or even fruit salads!
I also made some cracking cookies with the strained out ginger bits - The recipe was hell easy! and they look pretty yummy no? - They also taste amazing but you will have to trust me on that.  
Fluffy ginger biscuits! Definitely not healthy but ridiculously more-ish!

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