Spiced Cider Switchel

The Wonder Tonic!

We at the Mountain Cider Company have been experiencing a bit of a late season heat wave up here in Vermont. Usually, by this time of year, I’m expecting to see some frost on the pumpkins, but instead we’ve been treated to a slate of 90 degree days. This is rare, even for summer. Outdoor work, which is usually quite pleasurable in the Fall, has turned into a sweaty, arduous, endeavor. Luckily, we have a traditional concoction for liquid revitalization which has helped abate the sun’s harsh gaze. I’m talking about switchel.

For those who haven’t heard of switchel, it’s also referred to as haymakers punch, and it’s essentially Gatorade for farmers. As the name would suggest, it’s best consumed after a hot day of loading hay bales, but since this heat wave persists, we’ve been quaffing it after our cider production runs. The basic recipe is pretty straightforward, but there are also tweaks you can make to suit your palate.

Spiced Cider Switchel

  • 1 oz. Spiced Apple Cider Concentrate
  • 1 oz. Apple cider vinegar (with the mother if you’re looking for that extra health kick)
  • A 1 inch hunk of ginger grated
  • ½ a lime, juiced
  • 2 cups of water

Grate your ginger and juice your lime into a quart sized mason jar. Add the Spiced Apple Cider Concentrate and the cider vinegar, along with two cups of water. Screw on the lid and shake to mix. From here you can either drink the switchel straight, or dilute it with more water, ice, or seltzer water. You can also keep a jar in the fridge to allow the ginger to steep longer and provide a spicier flavor.