Ginger beer article: "Zing of the Ginger Beer"

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Ginger beer article: "Zing of the Ginger Beer"

Postby pinkraut on Sun Jun 06, 2021 6:53 pm

Hi - long time since I've checked in here. I recently bumped into an article I thought was worth sharing: "Zing of the ginger beer: Rediscovering the lost fermentation of the 'super spice'" published in 2011 and appears to be from a food-industry journal in India.

It provides some history of ginger production, ginger beer itself, and a scientific history of the discovery of the microbes in the original ginger beer plant (GBP). The Instructables link about making your own beer from an authentic GBP link in the article is still active.

Another link provided leads to a German institute that is sort of a living "library" of microorganisms. The institute could be a valuable resource for those serious about pure cultures: although they no longer sell GBP grains, for 90 Euro you can order pure culture of Lentilactobacillus hilgardii, or you could go into production of acetic or citric acid by ordering from their strains for schools & universities. :P
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Re: Ginger beer article: "Zing of the Ginger Beer"

Postby pinkraut on Sun Jun 06, 2021 7:02 pm

Interestingly, the Instructables at step 3 says to scald the fresh ginger to kill any competing bugs. I have never done this, but next time I will certainly try it!

Long ago I had a South African roommate who had an old Afrikaans cookbook called "Ouma's Cookery Book" that taught how to make ginger beer. I don't remember the recipe except that it relied on wild, ambient yeast, and the bug got stronger each time he made it. In other words that recipe was not the "original" ginger beer plant either. I think the book might have been from the 1950s. Another recipe I remember seeing was a way of making a homegrown "yeast cake" based on potatoes and raisins IIRC -- a way to cultivate wild yeast for bread-making from before yeast packets were widely available. (And also before raisins were sulphured.)
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Re: Ginger beer article: "Zing of the Ginger Beer"

Postby Christopher Weeks on Mon Jun 07, 2021 8:15 am

Neat, thanks for the pointer!
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