Starting with plain sparkling soda, a gazoz layers in fresh fruits and flowers, aromatic herbs and spices, ferments, syrups, and other artisanal ingredients, all to create a beautiful marriage of flavour and fizz.
In Gazoz, discover recipes for stone fruit gazoz, citrus gazoz, even “milkshake” gazoz using nut butters.
The possibilities are endless, the results amazing. It’s the best nonalcoholic drink you’ve ever tasted and by far the most fun to make.
Mixed Berry and Jun
3-4 pieces each of fermented mixed berries (raspberry, blueberry, currants, blackberry) and syrup
1-2 Cypress leaves
1-2 Jasmine flowers or other flowers
1 Sage blossom
12 oz. Seltzer
Place the ice in a 12- to 16-ounce (360 to 475 ml) glass; spoon in the fermented fruit syrup. Add the fermented fruit, fresh fruit, fermented spice, and fermented spice syrup on top. Fill the glass with sparkling water, then garnish the top with the herbs, leaves, greens, and flowers of your choice. Insert straw and drink immediately.
Sweet Fermented Fruit in Syrup
Start the fermentation process with clean, unblemished fruit of the highest quality, preferably organic, seasonal, and local. The fruit is the star of the show and should be treated as such, especially because once you’re done drinking your gazoz, you will most likely lift the juicy slices of fruit out of the glass and eat them. The general rule for the fruit-to-sugar ratio is 70 percent sugar in relation to the weight of the fruit. Use that as your guide, unless otherwise indicated.
Makes 3 to 4 cups (about 1 KG) fruit with syrup
1 heaping tablespoon (20 g) baking soda
1¾ pounds (800 g) whole thin-skinned fruit (see Notes)
Lemon juice (optional)
1¼ pounds (560 grams) sugar
- Wash the fruit: Combine the baking soda with 2 quarts (2 l) cold water in a large bowl; add the fruit, rub it well with a soft cloth to clean it, then transfer it to a separate large bowl filled with ice water; let the fruit stand for 30 minutes to firm up.
- Prepare the fruit: Slice the fruit into 1-inch (2.5 cm) wedges (remove the cores, stems, and pits); you should end up with about 1½ pounds (700 g) cut fruit. If you’re using fruits that might turn brown (such as apples, pears, quince, etc.), drop them in a bowl filled with a mixture of 90 percent water to 10 percent lemon juice as you slice them.
- Layer some of the fruit in a roughly 1-quart (1 l) jar with a tight-fitting lid, then sprinkle with sugar. Continue to layer the fruit and sugar until the jar is filled, leaving at least 1½ inches of headroom at the top of the jar.
- Ferment the fruit: Seal the jar tightly and let it stand on the counter until a syrup has formed and the fruit has softened and slumped slightly, 1 to 3 days, depending on the temperature of your kitchen; the sugar will dissolve more with each passing day. Open the jars daily to release any built-up pressure from fermentation, and also to check the progress of the fruit. This is the critical juncture; once you detect an aroma that is the essence of the fruit with a drop of sourness and acidity—sort of like cider—that is the time to decide if you want to let it ferment longer so it becomes more tart, or refrigerate the jar to slow fermentation. You can also dip a spoon in to taste the syrup, which will give you a good indication of what’s going on in the jar.
- When you are happy with the flavour of the fruit, transfer the jar to the refrigerator. Use the fermented fruit and its syrup within 2 weeks.
» Notes: To make 1¾ pounds (800 g) whole fruit, you’ll need 4 or 5 apples, peaches, or pears, or 8 to 10 plums or apricots.
If using fresh berries, omit steps 1 and 2.
Jun differs from kombucha in that it uses honey in place of sugar at the beginning of the fermentation process.
Makes 12 cups (3 l)
½ ounce (15 g) pure green tea leaves
7 ounces (200 g) honey (preferably raw), or a little more to taste
1 jun SCOBY (see resources below)
- Place the tea leaves in a 1-quart (1 l) glass jar or bowl.
- Bring 4 cups (1 l) water to a boil, pour it over the tea leaves, and steep for 5 minutes.
- Strain the liquid into a 3-quart (3 l) glass jar; discard the tea leaves. Add the honey and stir until it has dissolved.
- Add 8 cups (2 l) water.
- Place the SCOBY on top of the liquid. Cover the jar with a piece of breathable fabric, top it with a paper towel, and secure with a rubber band. Store at room temperature out of direct sunlight for 10 days.
- After 10 to 14 days (depending on the weather), remove the cloth and let the aroma from the jar reach your nose; the jun should smell less acidic than kombucha, but still have a discernable acidity. Taste a teaspoon of the liquid; it should be balanced between sweet, tart, and slightly fermented. If it isn’t, cover the jar and let ferment 3 to 5 days more, then check again. Note that the warmer the weather (or the temperature in your home), the faster the jun will be ready; the colder it is, the more time it will take.
- Remove the SCOBY and place it in an airtight container; pour over 1 cup (240 ml) of the jun. Store in the refrigerator indefinitely to use for future batches of jun.
- Line a fine-mesh strainer with three layers of cheesecloth and set it over a bowl. Strain the jun through the strainer, then decant it into 1-quart (1 l) bottles, seal, and refrigerate. The jun will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 month; open the bottles every 2 days during storage to release pressure.
NOTE: For jun, fermentaholics.com sells a reliable organic live starter kit, which contains a SCOBY and starter tea.
Excerpted from Gazoz by Benny Briga and Adeena Sussman (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2021.