I'm on a mule kick and the bottled ginger beer I can find in stores just doesn't cut it. Turns out making your own ginger beer is ridiculously simple and insanely delicious.
1/2 lb fresh ginger, roughly chopped (no need to skin it)
Juice of 2 lemons
2 cups sugar
2 quarts boiling water
1 tsp champagne yeast (get some on Amazon or at wine-making or home-brewing supply stores)
Before starting, make sure you have a one gallon jar with a tight fitting lid for the fermenting, and one or more containers with lids to hold the finished ginger beer. I've saved a jar from a mondo purchase of giardiniera and use quart-sized mason jars for the final product. Some even use saved 2-liter bottles.
Add your ginger, lemon juice and sugar to a one gallon jar with a tight fitting lid.
Pour in the boiling water and stir to combine. Leave open and periodically check until it reaches room temperature, which will take about an hour or so. At this point, add the yeast, stir to combine and seal the jar.
Leave at room temperature for 24 hours to give the yeast time to ferment.
Strain through a fine mesh strainer, then distribute in mason jars or other containers and seal.
Leave at room temperature one more day before refrigerating. This will allow time for carbonation. Afterwards, store in the refrigerator and periodically open to release gas build-up. I have forgotten to do this and have blown a few lids!
Once chilled, enjoy as is or in your favorite mule cocktail.