Take a million dollars, baby, put it in my hand;
Put my favorite retouched photo on the soda can.
Put my face on television, say my name a lot; (lot lot lot)
Show your cola in every household, give it all you got;
Better strike while the iron’s hot!
John Fogerty, Soda Pop
When I came home from my trip last week, I brought a small selection of stuff back with me. I didn’t want to get very much as I knew I’d just have to put it all in storage next spring, but I did decide to bring some things to make my life a little more interesting in the meantime. I brought a couple boxes of books – all sci-fi fantasy novels for those quiet winter evenings, I brought a few pieces of clothing (while sending the other eight boxes to Goodwill), I brought my food processor – ’cause I could – and I brought my soda making equipment. Joy!
Unfortunately a few pieces of that equipment has disappeared over the years, and the syphone tube is looking a little, umm, grey…. so I need to replace a few things, but its all small stuff that I can order and have sent to me through the mail. So this morning I’ve been researching, refreshing my memory and figuring out exactly what I need to get. I found a brewing shop out of Colorado Springs, so I’ll call them later and get it all set up.
Next step…. gotta make my starter. It’s a simple process – a couple cups of water, some ginger and some sugar. Every day you add a little more ginger and a little more sugar until the fermentation process is in full swing. Should take about a week. I’ll probably start on that next week so that my soda will be ready for the holidays.
Making the soda itself is an equally simple process. Boil water with assorted flavorings, add sugar to make a syrup, top it off with more water and the starter and then let it ferment. I usually use honey as one of my flavorings so the fermentation process will take a couple of weeks. Then bottle, let it ferment a little longer (to carbonate) and viola! Home made soda.
My most successful effort included ginger, lemon juice, peppercorns and cranberries. I made it up in preparation for an Ish-gathering at my home some years back – friends came from all over the country to spend a long weekend together and regardless of what else was available, everyone went for the cranberry ginger ale, (and the cranberry nut bread I made from the leftover boiled cranberries.)
It will be interesting to see if the process is distinctly different working at high altitude. Everything else is different so we’ll see how this one works out. I already have friends saving leftover 2 litre bottles for me, and I’ll repay the favor by filling them back up again. Who knows, once I get settled somewhere, I may be able to make this into a small scale cottage industry 😉 Farmers Market, here I come?