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What you need to know about switchel and 4 reasons you'll love drinking it this Summer

Healthy, refreshing drinks for the win! There's a new kid on the block and we don't want you to be perplexed when you hear people talking about it.

by: Andrea Fedder | 27 Sep 2018
switchel drink

(image: iStock)

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I’m not telling you about this because it’s trendy. It’s not even a new trend. No, as far as following the flock goes, I tend to run in the other direction of what’s currently considered ‘cool’. I refuse to eat anything ‘unicorn’ – that is something which has been transformed into a rainbow-coloured version of its former self in order to be more magical, and I draw a flat white line when you try to foist espresso in a chocolate coated waffle cone on me. This switchel thing, however, is definitely worth knowing about for several reasons

1. It’s not some viral-hungry, gimmicky trend

All the best new-age things were once old-school. LPs. Macrame plant holders. Neti-pots. Buying local. Yoga. Re-usable diapers. The list is long and filled with sustainability. Switchel is on that list.

Known to some as swizzy or ginger water and fondly referred to as haymaker’s punch, switchel can be traced back to the pioneering woodsmen and farming communities of 17th and 18th century American colonies, specifically New England. Some believe it was popularized in the Caribbean. Either way, it’s come full circle back to the console jar touting bearded hipsters and farm-to-table foragers.

2. It’s super easy to make

I first thought of switchel as the less effort, yet equally refreshing cousin of kombucha tonics. A twice removed cousin that is, because when you boil it down, they’re not that similar at all, except that you might find them in the same health aisle of the fresh goods market.

Where kombucha requires live bacterial colonies and days of fermentation, switchel is a happy and simple blend of water, ginger, apple cider vinegar and a sweetener, (usually maple syrup but can also be honey).

And here’s why I love it. It couldn’t be easier to make. Start with any one of the hundreds of recipes online and tweak the quantities to get your perfect flavor profile. Simmer it on the stove for a while to fully extract that zingy ginger tang. Pop it in the fridge and you’re golden – a golden oldie.

3. It’s healthy too (especially when you were being unhealthy the night before)

It simultaneously offers the tartness of a ginger beer, the sweetness of a cordial while refreshing you in that iced-tea-on-the-stoep kind of way. The ACV (apple cider vinegar) and maple in switchel means you get the added bonus of a rich potassium drink. This makes it a darn good option for keeping those post workout electrolytes in check. You may even lean on it in less-reputable instances when you find yourself reprimanding house mates for nabbing the last Rehydrate sachet, again.

4. It WILL be a popular and versatile crowd pleaser

The good gut vibes everyone’s after to cure all manner of ails sees another box ticked with this easy sipper, if you’re making yours with unfiltered ACV.

The final (and most dazzling) reason to make some ‘haymaker’ while the sun shines goes well with hammocks, picnics in the park, and possible even bespoke, apothecary-esque bars. Add a splash of your favourite craft gin or preferred tipple and you’ve got yourself a Lazy Lizzy Gin Fizzy Swizzle (Not yet a thing, I just made that up).

Guaranteed, you’ll find me flirting with a tall glass of switchel all summer long. But virgin or naughty, who can say?


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Move over selfie cappuccino, Moon Milk is the new Instagrammable drink but it's more than just a pretty picture. by: Robyn Brittow | 30 Aug 2018 (image: iStock ) Warm milk has been the go-to sleep remedy for centuries and now with added ingredients, Moon Milk is the new elixir that's all the rage in the wellness world.

Read more on: ginger  |  summer  |  drinks

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