Homemade Soda by Andrew Schloss

Posted May 28, 2011 by Meoskop in Book Reviews, Cooking, Nonfiction / 0 Comments

A root beer with a thick foam head sits in a sundae glass, a paper straw sticking up, on the right is a rainbow of recipe titlesYou know how some things once known cannot be unknown? That’s how I feel about the ingredients for Cola and various Root Beers. Thinking about drinking Kitchen Bouquet Browning Liquid makes my rejection of commercial soda all the more sincere. I’m a changed woman. (Ok, on vacation I am totally going to relapse. Let’s be honest.) Homemade Soda¬†sometimes gave me that feeling you get watching an evening news report on food standards for your child’s chicken nugget versus Fido’s pet food.

Sure, it’s called 7-Root Beer, but actual roots? Carrots and parsnips and licorice? I think I’ll go back to Grapefruit Soda, it tastes like a Fresca without the artificial kick in the finish. Strawberry Pineapple Soda is ridiculously easy to make the syrup for. Homemade Soda has the right combination of accessible and outrageous. I like a cookbook that blends things I can make tonight with things I’ll never make but tell myself I’ll try next weekend, or maybe the one after but certainly by the end of the month…

Graphically, the book is beautiful. The font and layout has a strong early seventies feel which is an emotional heyday for me and soda. Schloss gives clear and careful instructions for a variety of methods, from a simple mix with seltzer to using a siphon or fermenting your own concoctions. I think this is the next foodie craze – can you imagine throwing a party where all the mixers or soft drinks were made in your own kitchen? Go ahead and cater the main course, everyone will still talk about your mad kitchen skills the next day. Especially if you mix up a batch of Blazing Inferno Chile water. Homemade Soda is comprehensive, fun and beautifully designed. I’m going to be using it as a gift book this year, as I continue my crusade against waste by urging everyone to give up commercially bottled beverages.

three-half-stars