We have been experiencing an unusually hot and dry spring here in Minnesota, with record-breaking temperatures left and right. Working in the gardens, even briefly, leaves me dripping in sweat. I know much of the country is in the same boat. So this week I’ll share a delicious, refreshing switchel recipe with you!
Switchel is a drink best known as a thirst quencher for the early American farmer. The roots of switchel, however, date back several hundreds of years, with links to England and the Caribbean.
The potassium-dense ingredients of switchel offer electrolytes, which makes this a perfect hot-weather drink for these steamy days.
Yield: 1 quart of switchel
Strawberry Switchel Ingredients
- 1.5 cups strawberries
- 1 tbsp. fresh ginger root, peeled (about 1 inch whole)
- 1 tbsp. organic apple cider vinegar, raw and unfiltered (with the mother)
- 2-3 cups water, as needed
- 1 tbsp. raw honey (or maple syrup)
Wash and prep ingredients. Remove stems from strawberries and slice in half.
In a blender, add strawberries, ginger, honey and one cup of water. Then blend until the berries are completely broken down. Next, transfer the berry mixture into a clean quart canning jar, add the apple cider vinegar, and fill with cool water, leaving 1 inch of headspace.
Use a spoon to thoroughly stir together the ingredients.
Next, wipe the rim of the jar with a clean dampened towel. Apply the canning jar lid and tightly screw on the ring. Store the jar at room temperature, out of direct sunlight, for 24-48 hours.
After complete, transfer the jar of switchel to the fridge and enjoy within 2 weeks.
Pour switchel over ice and enjoy! If you are not a fan of the solids in your drink, use a fine mesh sieve to strain them out before consuming.
Switchel also makes a fantastic cocktail mixer. Just add a shot of your favorite liquor, mix and serve.
You can use frozen or fresh strawberries for this switchel recipe, though you do need fresh ginger.
Consider muddling in basil or other herbs to change the flavor of your switchel.
For a more prominent ginger flavor, add an additional tablespoon of ginger.
This recipe was adapted from WECK Small-Batch Preserving (2018) with permission from Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.