Ginger wine, with its rich history and distinct flavour, occupies a unique place in the world of beverages. With its robust flavour and great potential health advantages, this beverage popularised in East India readily meets the standard – refreshing with health benefits.
All About Ginger Wine
This sweet and spicy drink originated in India in the early 1900s and was popularised by a rare cookbook edition titled “The East Indian Cookery Book.” It does not contain any alcohol, despite its name. In addition to tasting excellent, the drink claims to offer a range of medical properties, which its devoted followers appear to back up with plenty of anecdotal evidence.
Ancient civilisations in India and China valued ginger for its ability to soothe various ailments, from digestive issues to inflammation. The ginger root, a key ingredient, is renowned for its anti-nausea, anti-inflammatory, and digestive properties.
Due to the use of caramelised sugar, this ginger wine is naturally thicker and more syrupy than other drinks. As a result, while many people enjoy it on its own, it is totally appropriate to thin it down with seltzers or sodas like ginger ale to provide carbonation.
Another alternative, in an ironic twist on its temperance-related roots, is to use it as a mixer with their preferred alcoholic liquor to make a cocktail — gin and brandy are common options.
How To Make Ginger Wine?
Crafting ginger wine is an intricate process that requires precision and a deep understanding of ingredients. The primary component, ginger, is harvested and then carefully cleaned, peeled, and grated. This drink combines fresh ginger, sugar, chiles, lime, water, and a variety of spices like cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves. When it comes to putting these items together, each household has its own peculiarities and order of operations, but the typical formula is as follows:
- First, caramelise the sugar in a pan till golden brown.
- Add the water, ginger, lime juice, and spices next.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low heat and let the brew to steep until the desired flavour and consistency is achieved.
- When ready, drain the solids from the liquid and serve after it has totally cooled.
The final tonic is sweet and tart but spicy and warming. Homemade ginger wine has long been lauded for its capacity to relieve indigestion, prevent colds, and soothe sore throats.
Cover image credits: Canva
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