We start by making a flavor emulsion from essential oils! These are extremely strong, and can cause skin irritations, so wear latex gloves for this step!

needle 

We also need super small quantities, I'm aiming for:

0.75 ml orange oil
0.7 ml lime oil
0.2 ml lemon oil
0.15 ml nutmeg oil
0.08 ml cassia oil
0.05 ml coriander oil
0.05 ml lavender oil

For measuring, I have a 1 ml syringe:

There! In total, we have about 2 ml of essential oil. This will lend flavor to about 9 L of cola!

But oils don't dissolve in water, right? They would just float on the surface!

So what we'll add next is gum arabic, a natural emulsifier, that will help the oil form tiny, tiny droplets that stay dispersed in water!

Combine 2 g of gum arabic, 4 ml water, and our oil mixture with a hand mixer. Keep mixing until it emulsifies, it will take on a milky brown color and the oily phase will disappear. This took me about 5 minutes.

Next, we add: 40 ml of caramel color, which will give the cola its dark appearance.

As well as 5 g citric acid, and an additional 10 ml of water. You can also add caffeine at this point, but one of the main motivations for me to make my own cola is to have cola without caffeine (it gives me headaches).

Stop mixing when it starts smiling at you! :D This is our finished cola concentrate. It smells delicious!

Other recipes would now integrate this into sugar syrup made from 1 kg of sugar, but I want to try a variation using artificial sweeteners. This is a combination of sodium cyclamate and saccharin, which is pretty common in Europe. I'll use 70 ml.

Because this is still a very concentrated solution and hard to handle, I'm diluting it down to 1 L. In theory, this should give a nice cola when diluted further in a ratio of 1:8. First taste test upcoming!

It's good! It's really good! The sweetness is just right for me, and the oil blend tastes nice and cola-y! :)

I like my drinks *really* sour, so I might add another... 10 g of citric acid to this batch. There is a slightly bitter aftertaste, which I attribute to the artificial sweetener I'm using.

I might tweak the oil ratios to accentuate the citrus flavors a bit more in the next batch. Also, I thought this would be too much food coloring, but it seems pretty perfect!

I made DIY cola like this once before. What I'd be really excited to try is making other flavors: Orange soda! Cherry soda! Almond & apricot soda! <3 The problems is that I don't know of many DIY recipes for sodas except cola, which is surprising!

Open Soda opensoda.org/?cat=6 has two pretty weird ones (including a bubble gum soda?!), but that's pretty much all I found. There still seems to be potential for reverse engineering! :)

Here are two more resources I found while preparing my ingredients today: Jan Krüger's blog post about tweaking cola recipes jan-krueger.net/making-cola and Richard Grove's "Notes on Making Cola", which go deeper into food chemistry! sparror.cubecinema.com/cube/co

Made a second batch of cola syrup without caramel color. It's *much* weirder to drink than I expected.

I also switched to sucralose as a sweetener, hoping that it would have less aftertaste. Instead of 1000 g sugar in the original recipe, I used 1.6 g sucralose, which is ridiculous, but it's still too sweet for my taste. :O

Tool upgrade! It's important to get these small quantities right...

This week's batch: blood orange + almond + lime (in a 2:1:1 ratio), plus as much orange food coloring as I dared to put in! :D

I cut the amount of sucralose in half – still a bit too sweet for my taste. Had to completely guess the oil ratios, but I'm happy with how it turned out! My whole apartment smells like marzipan now. <3

This time, when I did the mixing in a big plastic bowl, I noticed some floating stuff on the concentrate, which I assume are tiny plastic shavings produced by the hand mixer? I filtered them out, and might switch to glass or metal containers.

In today's cola batch, I reduced the amount of sucralose further to 0.4 g, added 0.07 g vanillin, as well as a bit more cassia oil. Good stuff! I call it "Syntez-Cola", because I combined ideas from Cube-Cola and Jan Krüger's recipe! :)

... this is the point where I should start a blog post, and a Git repo with version numbers and a changelog, I guess. :P

I found decaf Coca-Cola in a supermarket last week, and could do a direct taste comparison. At this point, I prefer my cola by a large margin! Coca-Cola tasted bland, like molten cola popsicles. It had an interesting dryness to it, though, which I'm not sure how to replicate.

Made a simple orange soda today, really happy with how it turned out! I put the recipe here, along with my modified cola recipe, and the almond + blood orange drink I invented: github.com/blinry/soft-drink-r

blinry almond 0.1.1 contains less almond oil, to highlights the citrus flavors a bit more. Find the updated recipe here: github.com/blinry/soft-drink-r

One of these is a version with sugar instead of sucralose. 400 g of sugar seem to be a good replacement for 0.6 g sucralose. Curious to see whether people will be able to taste the difference! :)

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@blinry so orange that it radiates into the desk ^^

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