Ginger Calendula Ferment

06_27_2014_07

My friend recently posted an instagram photo showing her batch of ginger calendula ferment and, considering we have quite a few calendula plants growing in the garden, I asked her to share the recipe. So now we are making a batch of our own!

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We have collected and dried a jar full of calendula flowers from the garden – aren’t they pretty?? We’ve also started a new tray of seedlings. So much calendula.

Ginger Calendula Ferment

(Recipe is for 4L) Start by making a ginger bug (recipe below!) When ready – 5 to 7 days – strain 1/2 cup liquid and set aside. For the tea: 2L water to 2 cups sugar. Boil, add 6″ of grated ginger. Simmer a bit then remove from heat. Squeeze and throw a few whole lemons in pot and add 2 cups of dried calendula flowers. Stir the mixture for a few minutes then strain the liquid. Add 2L cold water and let cool to room temperature. Ensure it is at room temperature (don’t rush!) then add the starter liquid from the ginger bug. Cover the jar with a cloth and let sit on your counter for a few weeks to ferment. Stir it once daily to prevent mold. Taste to determine when ready, and enjoy!

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06_29_2014_02

We have started our ginger bug and it is happily bubbling away on the counter as I type. What is a ginger bug, you say? It’s a culture of beneficial bacteria made from fresh ginger root and sugar, and it’s really easy to do.

Ginger Bug

2 cups de-chlorinated water (if you don’t have filtered water at your fingertips you can leave a bowl of tap water out overnight and the chlorine dissipates)

2-3 tablespoons grated ginger

2-3 tablespoons organic cane sugar (I’ve read that you can also use white refined sugar, but this is what we had on hand)

Mix the water, ginger and sugar into a jar and cover with a cloth or coffee filter (pictured above is our reuseable fabric filter) and leave out on your counter. Every day for 5 days add 1 tsp of grated ginger and 1 tsp of sugar and stir with a non-metal spoon. After a few days the mixture will begin to bubble as the beneficial bacteria eat the sugar. After 5 to 7 days it is ready to go! You can strain off 1/4 – 1/2 cup liquid, replacing it with equal parts unfiltered water, then continue to feed the bug daily to keep it going. If you would like to “rest” your bug, place it in the fridge and feed it just once a week. To “reactivate” it, put back on the counter and continue to feed daily. Neat!

I’ll post an update once our bug is ready.

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