July 21, 2010

Recipe 2 - watermelemon

This recipe came about because my kids wanted to buy a watermelon. The trouble is, no one in our house really gobbles up watermelon. Now, I've always thought, "If watermelons are so juicy, why don't they sell watermelon juice?" So I juiced the watermelon, and now I know why no one juices watermelons. The juice really isn't all that great. So I decided to make it into a soda.
I juiced not quite half a watermelon and came up with about 3 pints of juice. As you can see, I still have half a watermelon left which I may juice later if no one eats it. By juicing I mean mashing it up and pressing it through a coffee filter, jelly bag, or other clean filter.

So, you'll need:
2 L Club Soda well chilled
1 c sugar
2.5 c watermelon juice
0.5 c lemon juice

Combine the sugar and juices in a saucepan and let it come to a gentle boil on med heat for about 5 min. This does change the flavor profile of the watermelon juice a little, but I wanted to be sure to kill any wild yeasts. This will make a very thin syrup, that you can dilute in the club soda at about 25-30%, meaning 3-4ozs. per 12oz. bottle.

July 18, 2010

Recipe 1 - Lime in 'd' Coconut

This ended up nicely for what it is. As a confession this isn't the first batch I've made, but as far as anything written down it is. First though I'd like to say that this club soda plus syrup idea isn't working out as well as I'd hoped. There are a few problems that I'd like to just put out there before I start off. First is that your club soda has to be cold, and I do mean cold. You want it borderline frozen. (In case you want to know why) And be careful, because I've pulled mine out of the freezer thinking it's just right and then as I opened the cap, the pressure drop caused enough dip in temperature to freeze part of the soda. It's kind of difficult emptying slush out of a 1L bottle. It's fun to see something freeze right before your eyes, though. Second, it's not as economical as I would have hoped. I'm paying the same amount for unflavored carbonated water as I would buying a cheap, private label pop. And lastly, I'm not getting the carbonation that I would like. You lose pressure opening the club soda, you lose pressure transferring to another bottle, you lose pressure as the CO2 bubbles out to pressurize the headspace of your capped bottle. So the result is not as fizzy as I'd like, and I like as much fizz as I can get! So I'll be seeking new ways to get more bubbles in my bubbly.
But anyway, this turned out alright for a quick batch. I call it Lime in 'd' Coconut after the popular song.
This is roughly what I used:
1 L club soda
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
2/3 cup lime juice
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup coconut water, sans pulp
1/2 tsp. Coconut flavoring
3-4 drops neon green food coloring

Put the sugar and the water in a saucepan and heat until the sugar is dissolved. Add the juices and coconut water and heat further to ensure you won't have anything growing once it's in your bottles, though it's good enough that it won't be stored long anyway. After the syrup is cooled you can add the coloring and the coconut flavor. At this point you can adjust your syrup to club soda ratio to taste, so you'll know what to put in each bottle. Then you should measure what volume of syrup you have, add that to your volume of club soda and that will tell you how many bottles you'll need.
Put the syrup(best if chilled) in first, and then gently pour the ice cold club soda through a funnel that is tilted so as to gently pour it down the side of the bottle. This way you don't create a lot of foam on top and you don't lose as much carbonation in the transfer. Cap it quickly and then you can shake gently to thoroughly mix your syrup. Let the CO2 settle and achieve equilibrium before you open it though.

It tastes, great. Very strong lime flavor, with just enough coconut to taste, but not over power. Tastes like an island breeze. No joke.
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