Monday, February 23, 2015

Waiting, Weather and Childhood memories found.

We are waiting for little things to clear with the land sale. The deal has closed thank goodness.

The weather is being weather. Does no one understand the word AVERAGE? All the talk about more snow than average makes me crazy, after all the average is made up of both low snowfall and deep snow fall, you need both to get an AVERAGE!

Then this neat thing came up.

When I was a little girl on the farm way back when my mother made a drink in summer she called Ginger Beer. It was a special treat on hot summer days when we helped out in the hayfield and my father drank a lot of it to keep hydrated in the heat and under hard working conditions.

I remember the taste....sweet, tart and gingery. It was amazingly refreshing and would quench your thirst and not leave you wanting to drink too much. I grew up having no idea of how she made it but I remember the taste!

I have bought bottle after bottle of ginger beer and ginger drinks to find that elusive taste with no luck and here with us snowed in and time on our hands Ralph sent me an article on a Drink called Switchel. It was labeled as a drink for digestion as it is made with cider vinegar and honey and of course ginger.

I shrugged as Ralph asked me to make some to see what  it was like. I made the first batch and I gasped as I took the first taste. I recognized it in a mothers Ginger Beer!
I was amazed and delighted and just so pleased to have finally found this  taste of childhood.

Now is it a good as I remember it....well yes. We have enjoyed it this week, I send a bottle or two with Ralph in his work lunch. It quenches your thirst, does not contain any High fructose corn syrup and refreshes so well!

Here is the recipe:

1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
Ginger to taste [I use thin sliced ginger root from our home grown Ginger]
2 quarts water

Serve cold or over Ice.

A wonderful bright drink and oh the memories. The smell of fresh cut hay, the poking of stubble on bare legs, the field mice and the feel of hot summer sun on my back!


  1. Thanks for the recipe, Fiona. I will hang on to that one.


  2. I remember all the old farmers around our farm used to use this. I have to say I never tried it:) B

  3. I make this (or a version of this) every summer - it's from my grandfather who titled the recipe "Hay Switchel". It's the best! Congrats on the closing - you're on your way!

  4. laura ingalls wilder haying switchel

    don't think they had ginger.
    thanks for recipe--always wanted it.

    1. I remember Laura describing the drink Ma made but I agree I don't remember them using ginger. There is so much in the "Little House" books!
      Thank you for commenting.