This warmly spiced pumpkin syrup can be used in many ways. Just a day or two after it has been made, it is thick and sweet, with just a touch of sparkle from the ginger bug. At this stage, we like to use it over yogurt, breakfast foods, or as a sweetener in recipes that call for date or maple syrup. Left to ferment for longer, however, it becomes sharper and tangier. We like it at this stage in cocktails, as a zippy bit of seasonal flavor. The ginger bug is a key ingredient here; it initiates fermentation, and adds a note of ginger heat to the pumpkin and spices.
If you don’t have a ginger bug, you’ll need to make one for this recipe. Luckily, they’re easy to make, and it only takes a few days to get one going.
After you have the ginger bug made, this recipe should ferment for at least 24 hours. It can be left for up to a week at room temperature, if you would like to continue fermentation beyond the initial 24 hour period. The syrup will become thinner and less sweet the longer it ferments.
Adapted from the book Ferment, Pickle, Dry: Ancient Methods, Modern Meals by Simon Poffley and Gaba Smolinska-Poffley.
Cover loosely, or affix an airlock to the jar. Allow to ferment at room temperature for 24 hours before chilling in the fridge.
Shake well before using. This syrup should keep for a month in the fridge.
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