Probiotic Chocolate Soda
I made a cold infusion of raw cacao not long ago. It was yummy, and I enjoyed it on it’s own, but I was craving bubbles in my beverage, so I decided to make Chocolate Soda – with probiotics!
Hunting through google, the only recipes I could find involved chocolate syrup and seltzer water which doesn’t sound the least bit interesting to me! :\
Yeast can be found and cultivated many ways. I chose my ginger bug.
Once established, a ginger bug will survive tucked in the back of the fridge without any care whatsoever. (Ask me how I know:)).
I make bread daily; sometimes with a preferment. I decided to use this concept with my ‘bug’. I strained 7/8 cup from my hibernating ginger bug, fed it and put it back in the fridge.
With the 7/8 cup I’d strained off, I added fresh water to make 1 cup, then put it in a jar, with a tbsp. of grated ginger, a tbsp. of sugar and 5 raisins. I left it, covered with several layers of cheesecloth, on the counter to do it’s thing.
The next day, there were bubbles indicating it was ready to do its thing, if yours is not ready that soon, just stir and feed daily until bubbles start to appear.
While the bug was waking up, I also made another cacao infusion. I used raw cacao and cocoa powder because the flavors have very different qualities.
I left 2 ounces crushed cacao paste and 1/2 cup cacao powder in a jar of water in the fridge overnight, then strained off the chocolate.
It doesn’t really matter how much water is used because you can add more water later in the recipe.
Once the bug and infusion are ready, it’s time to build flavors.
I made a simple syrup using 2 cups sugar:1 cup water. Once cooked down, I stirred in 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract.
While the syrup was cooking, I boiled 2 cups water, then simmered with*:
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt
- 10 fennel seeds
- 4″cinnamon stick
- 10 peppercorns
- 1/8 cup grated ginger
*Flavor this brew however you like. Try adding mint, orange zest, or coffee..
This simmered for about 20 minutes. I left it to cool and strained out the solids.
Out of curiosity, I did a hydrometer reading which came out at 1.03 SG.
Now, just mix all these liquid components together in a sterile 1 gallon container:
- 1 cup ginger bug
- cacao water
- simple syrup
- flavoring brew
Fill to shoulders of container with cool water and top with an airlock.
Leave in a warm area of your house for 3 days (or anytime from 2 – 5 days, depending on flavor development), stirring daily with a non-reactive utensil (I used a wooden chopstick).
Bottle into sterile drinking containers, filtering if necessary (I used 591ml pop bottles – they can handle the buildup of pressure from the CO2).
Leave the bottles overnight to carbonate before chilling and serving.
Check out the bubbles! Natural carbonation in real time (no editing here!)…