Today I want to post a different recipe, instead of the usual beer I want to return to making soda. If you are a regular reader you may remember that a little while back I discussed craft soda. In that post I covered a little bit about the history of soda and I added a ginger soda recipe.
I’ve been working on a few more recipes and I have to say the best recipes are sometimes the simplest. The recipe that I’ve had the most success with and probably the most enjoyable is Grapefruit Soda.
The weather is starting to warm up here in the UK and with the warmer weather you sometimes just want a refreshing, cold drink. This grapefruit soda covers those bases, it only takes a few ingredients and 5 or 10 minutes to make.
There are similar offerings for Grapefruit Soda from the notably upmarket San Pellegrino, you know those cans with the foil lids. My recipe for Grapefruit soda is nearly indistinguishable from the San Pellegrino offering and won’t cost you anywhere near as much.
The trick with making any soda is balancing the tastes and flavours of what you’re using. Grapefruit obviously fairly sour and acidic so we need to balance the acidity with sweetness. Getting the right balance means a refreshing citrus drink, not enough sweetness means a mouth puckering experience and too much sweetness and everything becomes cloying.
Of course people have different tastes you may want a sour or a sweet version but you do have to remember that sugar and the sweetness it brings elevates the flavour of the grapefruit bringing it to the forefront.
As with my ginger soda recipe the basis of this drink is to make a syrup from the grapefruit zest, juice and sugar that is then diluted down with bottled carbonated water (soda water). This is pretty much how all commercial fizzy soft drinks are made. If you are a home brewer and you have kegs around you could always carbonate your own water which would save you having to buy any. You could even make the grapefruit syrup, dilute down with still water and force carbonate in the keg meaning you could have soft drinks on tap alongside your beers. However, there is no issue with using bottled carbonated water in terms of flavour the results will be exactly the same.
Grapefruit Soda Ingredients
- 2 Grapefruit
- 300 grams of Sugar
- Pinch of Salt
- 400ml Water
- Juice of 2 Grapefruit
Begin by zesting the grapefruit, I like to use a peeler to remove large pieces of the peel so that it is a lot easier to remove them later on. You could of course use a zester which shouldn’t be any problem if you have a sieve to remove the zest.
Bring the water, sugar and a pinch of salt to the boil and simmer on a medium heat for a few minutes. Add the zest and turn of the heat, cover the pan and allow the zest to steep for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes add the grapefruit juice to the pan, stir and then strain into an airtight container or bottle. Allow the syrup to cool and then refrigerate.
That’s really all there is to it. The recipe couldn’t be any simpler. I like to think that the character that so many brewers strive to get in their IPA’s lies in this soda recipe and it makes a great alternative for when you want a night off drinking beer.
Let me know if you try the recipe and how you get on.