Category Archives: cocktails

Burnt Honey Bramble Cocktail + A Beyond Canning Giveaway

In autumn, I love that the chaos of summer slowly fades away and you suddenly have permission to take it slow for a while. In spring, at least for me, that feeling inverts and every fiber of my being turns needy: craving nothing but sun, dirt and fresh air (erm, and maybe iced coffee). Spring also means time to turn over the freezer and pantry inventory before new fruit grows to take its place, as the cycle goes. How is it that I still have at least three gallon bags of raspberries in the freezer? Time to find a way to use it all up, and my friend Autumn has just the ticket.

Seriously, the arrival of Autumn Giles’ Beyond Canning couldn’t be better. I read a lot of preserving books. (Probably too many.) I have had the pleasure of meeting Autumn in person (and swapping for some of her amazing marmalade) and I can vouch that her bubbly personality and knack for amazing flavor combinations shine through every page of Beyond Canning. While I have only made one batch of Autumn’s Raspberry and Burnt Honey Gastrique, I can safely say it’s found a permanent home in my regular preservation rotation. AND I have more than a few recipes dog-eared for this upcoming preserving season. I have never before made a gastrique, and I am impressed how this one does double duty as a sauce and shrub and is even quite delicious drizzled over vanilla ice cream. Autumn was kind enough to let me share the recipe and has offered to give away a copy to one of you.

Spring is here and Autumn has written a fantastic book. I propose we celebrate with a cocktail. (I’m so predictable.) Cheers!

Raspberry and Burnt Honey Gastrique
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup honey
1 cup fresh raspberries
Pinch salt

1. Measure the vinegar and set it aside before you start cooking the honey. Over medium-low heat, cook the honey in a medium saucepan until it darkens noticeably, about 6 minutes.
2. Carefully stir the vinegar into the hot honey. The honey will sputter a bit. Stir in a pinch of salt.
3. Add the raspberries and return the mixture to a simmer over medium-low heat.
4. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the berries break apart and the mixture reduces slightly, about 10 minutes.
5. Use a fine mesh strainer to strain the liquid into a mason jar for storage in the fridge.
[Autumn goes on in Beyond Canning to provide waterbath processing instructions, if you think you’ll need them. I bet there’s no way this vinegar-based preserve will go ignored that long.]

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Burnt Honey Bramble
2 oz. mulberry infused bourbon
1 oz. raspberry and burnt honey gastrique
1/2 oz. Suze gentian liqueur
1 egg white
2 dashes cherry pit bitters
2 dashes aromatic bitters

Dry shake egg white in a cocktail shaker or mason jar for about a minute. Add the bourbon, gastrique and gentian and shake for another 30 seconds. Double strain into a short glass over ice. Top with bitters and savor spring.

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Catch the rest of the Beyond Canning Virtual Book Tour:
3/7: Food in Jars
3/8: Punk Domestics
3/9: CakeWalk
3/10: Hip Girl’s Guide to Homemaking
3/11: Snowflake Kitchen
3/14: Good. Food. Stories.
3/15: Heartbeet Kitchen
3/16: Brooklyn Supper
3/17: The Briny
3/18: The Preserved Life
3/21: Hitchhiking to Heaven
3/22: Hola Jalapeno
3/23: Cook Like a Champion
3/24: Local Kitchen

Whole-Cranberry Raspberry Sauce Cocktails + A Practical Pantry Giveaway

We moved house and home in September. Into not our first place, but the first one that’s ours, mortgage and all. The joys (and headaches) of being new homeowners have been simultaneously overwhelming and exhilarating. How it’s supposed to be, right?

Moving stinks. Trust me, I get it. But I had a triple whammy of being a preserver, and burgeoning cocktail nut, during shoulder season. You can imagine the acres of delicate (and full!) glass we had to schlep. Like multiple carloads. Multiple MULTIPLE cardloads. Combined with forced down time during the height of the season. Now that it’s all said and done, the joy of sitting down and relaxing in our own space makes it all worth it, ten times over.

Another joy has been Cathy’s wonderful book, which was delivered a few weeks ago. I got a chance to sit down under a warm blanket and digest it with a cup of tea. This book is far more than meets the eye, folks (even though that cover is sure a looker!). Its nothing short of an inspirational collection of preservation techniques and recipes of all colors and flavors, from entry-level to expert territory. I have already bookmarked the Blackberry Hazelnut Conserve for next year’s list (if I don’t sub the black raspberries in my chest freezer in the interim). As someone who has waterbath canning pretty down (or so I’d like to think), I am most excited about Mrs. W’s forays into other areas. I’ve been pouring over the smoking and curing sections, looking at Gravlax, Guanciale, Hot-Smoked Salmon, Smoked Whole Chicken, and Maple-Bourbon Bacon. Plus, in the index, there are SEVEN entries under bourbon alone. Mrs. W is singing my tune.

Mrs. Wheelbarrow's Practical Pantry

I especially appreciate Cathy’s new twist on old favorites. Just in time for this month’s big holiday, her Whole-Cranberry Raspberry Sauce recipe strikes just that chord. New preservers? Fear not – you can make the recipe, put into a jar and refrigerate. Want to be able to put it on your shelf or give as gifts? Follow Mrs. W’s waterbath canning instructions (it’s super easy – if you have hot sauce you are 90% there!) Just follow the recipe below.

Reprinted from Mrs. Wheelbarrow’s Practical Pantry: Recipes and Techniques for Year-Round Preserving by Cathy Barrow. Copyright © 2014 by Cathy Barrow. With permission of the publisher, W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. All rights reserved.

Whole-Cranberry Raspberry Sauce
4 cups (28 oz., 800 g) granulated sugar
4 cups (32 oz., 950 ml) nonchlorinated water
Grated zest of 1 orange
Juice of 1 lemon
4 cups (14 oz., 390 g) cranberries
1 cup (8 oz., 225 g) fresh raspberries
1⁄2 teaspoon unsalted butter (optional)

1. Combine the sugar, water, zest, and juice in your preserving pot and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

When the mixture is briskly boiling, carefully add the cranberries. The berries will burst when heated and may splatter. Cook until most of the berries have burst and the sauce is thickening, about 12 minutes.

2. Add the raspberries and bring back to a boil that will not stir down. Boil hard for about 10 more minutes. Test the set using the wrinkle test or the sheeting test. Add the butter, if using, to clarify and clear the sauce.

3. Ladle into the warm jars, leaving 1∕2-inch headspace. Clean the
rims of the jars well with a damp paper towel. Place the lids and rings on the jars and finger-tighten the rings.

4. Process in a boiling-water bath for 10 minutes.

The sauce is shelf stable for 1 year.

Snowflake Kitchen | Whole-Cranberry Raspberry Sauce Cocktails

The preserve is great all by itself, but I, of course turned it into several libations. First, I added a spoonful to a can of raspberry-lime seltzer while I waited for the jars to process in the waterbath. Then, I added 3/4 of an ounce of Michter’s Toasted Barrel bourbon and some Hella Bitter Aromatic Bitters. Then, the next day, it was the perfect happy hour accompaniment with some Bombay Sapphire Far East, homemade Kaffir Lime bitters, and tonic. However you choose to use it, any cocktails made with Mrs. W’s Whole-Cranberry Raspberry Sauce are equally beautiful and delicious.

Interested in a deeper look at Mrs. Wheelbarrow’s Practical Pantry? One lucky reader is going to take home a copy of this gorgeous book. Leave me a comment below, telling me what new-to-you preserve is first on your list for 2015. Then seek out some bonus entries. The giveaway ends on 11/10/14. Good luck!

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MxMo LXXXVII: Shiro Plum Rye Smash

I had exactly a million and one ideas swirling about for my very first Mixology Monday. This month’s theme is The Smash. Of course, all those great ideas all went out the window (thanks procrastination, humidity and stress!) and I decided instead to make one with what was on the shelf and in the fridge in between massive canning projects. ‘Tis the season, after all. This version turned out quite nicely, as most smashes I usually make are firmly on the sweeter side of things. Which gets old. Quickly.

As a preserver, I usually have fruit and syrup in excess at my disposal: in recent memory I’ve put up mulberry syrup, shiro plums in honey syrup, smoked cherry syrup, rhubarb in syrup, pickled blueberries, two kinds of cocktail cherries, and jams galore. This cocktail, as a nice change of pace, prefers instead to straddle the sweet-sour fence, with help from rosé and tart shiro plums. A nice change from your average smash, topped off with some funky, piney propolis bitters from Stonewall Apiary which take the drink over the top. I may make variations of a whatevers-in-season fruit smash a lot folks, but this riff is a keeper. Shiro Plum Rye Smash | Snowflake Kitchen

Shiro Plum Rye Smash
1.5 oz Rye (I used New England Distilling’s Gunpowder Rye)
1 oz rosé (Something from Spain)
.75 oz rhubarb syrup (homemade)
1 shiro plum, pitted and chopped
1 teaspoon Stonewall Apiary Propolis Bitters
1/2 teaspoon Sweet Annie Pollen
Crushed Ice

Muddle pollen, plums and rye. Add rosé and rhubarb syrup, and stir well. Add crushed ice, and a few dashes of bitters. Top with a more creative plum garnish than what I can come up with. Cheers!

mxmologo

Cherries in Cinnamon, Bay and Cassis Syrup

Don’t blink – in case you missed it, cherry season has come and just as quickly gone again as suddenly as it appeared. In the midst of buying a house and all the insanity that comes part and parcel with that big life step, I took a lovely break to go to Belltown Hill Orchards with friends. We completely binged on the first day of cherry season – picking eight pounds in about forty minutes, not counting the ones in our bellies.

Cherries | SnowflakeKitchen.com

It was the perfect antidote to forget about it all. At least for a few hours. But the serenity found in the PYO orchard is not just preserver’s therapy. You see so many different types of people in the cherry orchard – families, couples, all generations – all out to get ’em while the getting’s good. True to form, the cherries were picked out the next day and gone for the rest of the year shortly thereafter.

So what to do with the fleeting bounty of local cherries? I’ve made cocktail cherries before. Luxardo-ed to the max Maraschino Cherries and Cherries in Bourbon Meyer Vanilla Syrup. And I’ve discovered a few commandments cardinal rules of jarred cherries along the way. First, thou shalt stem and pit your cherries the same day you plan to can them. Second, unless you have specific plans for them, spike the syrup with a tablespoon or two of alcohol just prior to the waterbath instead of fruit in full-on spirit. This makes for a much more versatile preserve. Third, make more than you think you’ll use, because the syrup and cherries themselves are equally delicious. Here is this year’s version, which are already being enjoyed with seltzer and lime bitters, but equally anticipated in a black Manhattan someday soon.

Cherries in Cinnamon, Bay and Cassis Syrup | Snowflake Kitchen

Cherries in Cinnamon, Bay and Cassis Syrup
5 cups sweet Bing cherries
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
5 whole cloves
Creme de cassis
Bourbon
1 cup cane sugar
2 cups water

Add spices into a jelly bag or cheesecloth bundle. Make 1:2 simple syrup by bringing the sugar and water to a boil and add spices. Simmer on very low heat for about 5 minutes and infuse for as long as you can, up to overnight. When ready to can, prepare canner, jars and reheat syrup. Pit cherries and cold pack into hot jars. Pour one tablespoon each bourbon and creme de cassis over the cherries and top with syrup. Leave approximately 1/2″ headspace and process for 10 minutes.

Obsession (+ a turn to all things cocktail)

Sorry, folks. I’ve clearly been elsewhere. Trying to live in the moment, however in vain that might be. We’ve also been sucked into a late and long spring that is now right on the edge of summer, and I just can’t help avoiding all things inside.

On top of all that, we’re trying to buy our first house, having intensive dog training issues/classes, and generally trying to keep ourselves sane, washed and fed. Not much time for creative outlets, but when a rare moment reveals itself, I have been much less focused on putting things into jars. Lately, its been an obsession putting things into a glass.

So I hope you don’t mind, but I think we are changing course on the blog a bit. I have dove deep into the world of craft cocktails – reading new books and blogs, binging on vintage glassware at the thrift store, and planning my next Drink Up NY and Caskers orders. I think many of my preserving skills transfer well to the world of cocktails, and – let’s face it – there was a lot of overlap anyway. So cheers to the new chapter – and thanks for sticking with me.

So a New York Sour is a classic twist on the whiskey sour – usually with a red wine float. This one subs in my favorite Grade B maple syrup for simple syrup – and gives the drink some richness you wouldn’t otherwise get with plain old cane sugar. Though this was made with Connecticut maple syrup, a Fairfield/Litchfield County sour didn’t have the same ring as a Champlain Sour (you know, the VT/NY border). If you’ll allow me a little geographic liberty, this drink is a nice departure from your average whiskey sour.

Champlain Sour | Snowflake Kitchen | www.snowflakekitchen.com

Champlain Sour
[Adapted from Food 52/Essex’s New York Sour]
2 ounces rye whiskey (I used Bulleit)
3/4 ounce lemon juice (Meyer is nice, if you can get your hands on it)
1/2 ounce Grade B maple syrup
1/2 ounce dry red wine for float (I used Tempranillo)

Add rye, lemon, and maple syrup in a cocktail shaker. Add ice. Shake for approximately 15 seconds, until frothy. Strain into a short glass (Duralex obsessed over here!) and float the red wine (pour gently off the back of a spoon) on top. Cheers!

Cherry and Sweet Annie Manhattan

What a strange winter this is. Not one, but TWO polar vortices, sheets of rain, and finding myself grumpier than usual about it. Most winters, I can scurry between house and car and office and car and house and other than deliberate ski trips, stay cozy inside. This winter, however, I have to take the furry guy that takes up most of my Instagram feed out for at least thrice daily walks. Some days, it’s chilly but lovely – the perfect thing to clear your head. Other days (ahem, today) it’s all driving snow and wind and even a Swix hat, Xtra tufs and two base layers can’t keep out the chill.

If I had a fireplace, I would make one of these after making a raging fire and stare off into nothingness for a while. Alas, as my personal fireplace is only in my head, I will have to settle from the internal warmth that comes from bourbon. Back on the bitters train, a Manhattan makes a great vehicle for tinkering. If you are a cherry fan, this one is definitely for you.

Cherry and Sweet Annie Manhattan | Snowflake Kitchen

Cherry and Sweet Annie Bitters
1 cup sweet cherries, thawed
1/2 cup sour cherries, thawed
1 cup high proof liquor (grain alcohol or unflavored moonshine)
2 tablespoons gentian root (or other bittering herb)
1 tablespoon wild cherry bark
1 tablespoon fenugreek
1 long branch of sweet annie, broken into smaller pieces
2″ cinnamon stick
2 whole cloves
1 teaspoon black peppercorns

Mash the thawed cherries and mix with the bittering herbs into the alcohol in half pint or other glass jar with a lid. Toast the spices over medium heat until fragrant, and swirl into the same mix. Top with the sweet annie and infuse for at least three weeks. Shake once daily and start tasting after three weeks or so. My batch was ready at four.

The Sweet Annie really makes these bitters. It’s intensely herbal tasting, but also fragrant. Cherry bitters a lovely, but try to find some if you can. I am lucky to have Sub Edge Farm closeby, and they bring bunches to market in the fall. Desperate? Email me – maybe I’ll even share my stash.

Cherry and Sweet Annie Manhattan
Inspired by the Manhattans at Firebox Restaurant in Hartford, CT
1 ounce bourbon
1 ounce cherry bounce
1 ounce ginjinha
5 drops Cherry and Sweet Annie bitters

Mix the first three ingredients in a cocktail shaker, or mason jar. If there is no ginjinha to be found, sweet red vermouth will work. Also if you have no cherry bounce (shame on you and make it next year!) – double your bourbon. You could even add a spoonful of cherry jam. Shake – stir – as you see fit. Add ice if you feel like it – this is an easygoing cocktail. Strain into a glass of choice – I alternate between a fancy coupe glass and a plain old Duralex tumbler – and then add bitters. No garnish needed, but a brandied or chipotled cherry would do you just fine. Alas, all I had was a clementine peel.

(Long Overdue) Vanilla Coconut Maple Bitters

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. It was a tough year. (Dear anyone that has any influence over these things: can 2014 continue an upward trend? Thanks.) I know its a bit early for a year-end retrospective – blame the incessantly grating Christmas creep. Since we last spoke, there have been all sorts of changes around these parts, mostly of the personal variety. I like to think that I’m willing to do a lot for people – to put my time, sweat, love and attention towards a multitasker’s nightmare of shared projects. And as long as those projects continue to give back – via a paycheck, gratitude or otherwise, that works for me. It’s a simple equation, really (isn’t it always?) when those endeavors stop giving back and become more of a source of pain than of fulfillment, then it is time to reevaluate and sometimes move on. Needless to say, when your days are consumed by personal evaluation, your writing gets pretty dull. Seriously – you should see my drafts folder. Let’s just say its been a year of full-on mental and physical decluttering.

The first casualty was my writing, but initially, so was my kitchen – enabled by my move to a much more urban location with excellent food aplenty. Obviously neither were great for my health or my wallet, so I eventually made my way back into the kitchen. Then – full disclosure – I hid there for a while. I realized that the kitchen shouldn’t always be a place of refuge. It can and should be a haven from stresses of work, play, and everything in between. But (and this may be a bit of a ‘duh‘ moment for most of you), I find there is something missing when my life is devoid of creativity and collaboration. And, after some navel gazing, I’ve come to accept that I get a lot of fulfillment not just from cooking and preserving but also from this blog.

So as I’ve reevaluated my life, I’ve reevaluated this space. Do you ever get a moment to take a step back and really think about how to do something right? I almost never get that chance. Thanks to the talented Cyn at River Dog Prints, ye olde blog has had a lovely reno (so come on and visit snowflakekitchen.com, you RSS readers). The new digs are emblematic of the new reality and I am quite taken with them.

I’ve also become more taken with bitters. I tried citrus bitters earlier in the year. They were good, but I found myself having to use a pretty large amount (like close-to-equal parts with the main booze of the drink) to get the flavor I was after. Ready to tinker again, I treated myself to a bottle of Onyx 111 and picked up some gentian root and other herbs from the Penn Herb Company. And though I’ve only had these bitters with one whiskey drink and one spiced rum drink, I am already enamored with them. They’re that little-something-extra-you-can’t-quite-put-your-finger-on that takes your drink over the top.

Vanilla Coconut Maple Bitters | Snowflake Kitchen

Vanilla Coconut Maple Bitters
Adapted from Imbibe Magazine’s Homemade Vanilla Bitters

1 cup Onyx Moonshine (or other high proof neutral liquor)
1 scant teaspoon gentian root
4 vanilla beans, split and scraped
1 tablespoon fenugreek
1/4 cup coconut flakes
1 tablespoon pink peppercorns
2 cardamom pods
Grade B maple syrup, to taste

Decorticate the cardamom (apparently that is the correct word!) and then toast the peppercorns, fenugreek, cardamom and coconut over medium-low heat until fragrant. Take care not to burn the pan. Add your toasted spices to a glass jar that has a lid – either a locking jar with a gasket or a mason jar will work well. After scraping, cut the vanilla pods in half so that they completely submerge and can fully infuse the ‘shine. Add the gentian root, vanilla and add Onyx to cover. If you don’t have high-test moonshine to work with, grain alcohol would work just fine. I find that a higher proof alcohol really does make a difference here – spring for the high-test hooch, people. The bitters need to infuse for a while – start tasting after three weeks or so. Once you can taste all of the flavors, strain and add maple syrup to taste – I ended up adding approximately 1/4 cup. Bottle into a smaller jar, or better yet find a vessel with an eyedropper. The coconut makes the bitters taste almost creamy, and the dark maple syrup and fenugreek add an almost malty flavor. I’m sure these are only the latest in a long line of bitters experiments.

So make these, tweak to your taste, and invite me over. I’ll bring chutney and cheese and we can catch up. And thank you for sticking around – I am so looking forward to many good things in store for the future.

Bourbon Ginger Hot Toddy

And here I said I was going to be around more and December 2012 went and sucked the words right out of me.

december_window

Well, that and the wretched cold I’ve picked up. Picked up, as in I left for work this morning perfectly healthy – if a little grumpy to be heading back to the office – and a few hours later I had the worst sinus headache, runny nose and all around fogginess in recent memory. Or long term memory – I am almost never sick. Even stranger, I came home and feel worlds better than hours ago at work – no medicine of any kind.

Clearly I am allergic to work and I should never have to go back. Fine by me, as long as they keep up that direct deposit thing.

Maybe it’s just life telling me to slow down, have a cup of something strong and hot, and take some vitamin C. I definitely have that last one down – as I seem to be going through a crate of clementines a week – and it would be faster than that if I weren’t rationing them a bit. Some winter citrus, a little bourbon – just what the doctor ordered.

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Bourbon Ginger Hot Toddy
At least one ounce bourbon
Two dehydrated meyer lemon slices or a squeezed wedge of fresh
A small slice of raw ginger – skin and all
Two heaping tablespoons local honey
Boiling water

I usually add the bourbon first, after I’ve put the kettle on. How sick are you feeling? Is this preventative? Is it all in your head? One ounce, then. *cough cough* A little more under the weather? Top it off a bit. I like bourbon (clearly, as you’ve noticed, dear readers) but almost any liquor of choice will do. Spiced rum, whiskey, applejack, even tequila and gin all have toddy versions. Go with what you like.

I throw in the lemon and ginger together and then drizzle honey over them both. For efficiency’s sake – pour the hot water over your honeyed spoon so you can have clean utensils ready to go for round two. Cause let’s face it – you’re going to need a second.

Mix up the spices, citrus and booze. Stick with the heat and ginger, though – for the, uh, medicinal qualities of course. I’m already planning new versions – grapefruit, gin and maple syrup. Applejack and cardamom with dark buckwheat honey. Not into the liquor? Add your favorite tea instead. Truth be told – I don’t care if it’s entirely the placebo effect – one or two of these sets me right as rain every time. Happy 2013 indeed.

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PS: If anyone has any other sinus headache tips or thoughts on how to do that whole stay home and still get paid thing, I am all ears.

Spice Rack Challenge(s): Mint and Basil

So I missed June’s challenge (mint) and almost missed this month’s challenge (basil) to boot. Bad, neglectful blogger. We’ve been in the thick of heat waves here in the Northeast, with maybe a day or two of temporary relief in between. Correlation? Causation? Who knows.

In any case, I’ve only had one thing on the brain. After a long walk to a roasting car at the end of a long workday – you know the ones where you can literally see the heat lines radiating off the pavement – what else? A cold drink, naturally. Adult beverages or otherwise, I’ve been craving fruity, bubbly refreshment at all times. They vary widely different depending on the day, but most of them follow the theme of fruit + ice + bubbles + maybe herbs + maybe booze. As you saw in the last post a Cherry Lime Rickey variation has been a favorite of late.  Here are my other two.

Blueberry Basil Ginger Chiller
Three tablespoons of blueberry butter (a la Marisa at Food in Jars)
Ginger Ale
Siam Basil (spicier than its Italian cousin)
Crystallized Ginger
Ice

Easy peasy: Spoon the bluberry butter into your glassware of choice. A pint jar, a pint glass, a quart jar… I won’t tell. Add your basil and chopped ginger, and muddle until fragrant – a great stress reliever after work, if need be. Add ice, top with ginger ale.

I’ve kept this one sans booze, but I think a little vodka would work well in this one.

Pineapple Mint Peach Rum Fizz
Three tablespoons of peach jam
One large sprig pineapple mint
One ounce Kraken Spiced Rum
Ginger Ale
Ice

Same method as above: spoon jam into a jar, add mint and muddle, add rum, add ice and top with ginger ale. Also tasty without rum, but a bit of grade B maple syrup would work well in its stead. Try not to relax with one of these in your hand. I dare you.

Options
➝If you make jam, your options are endless. If you don’t make jam, there’s no time like the present to start! If ‘ hot to turn on the stove, maybe an infusion, maceration, cordial or syrup is up your alley?
➝Try a shrub. Its got a vinegar tang, for a little something unexpected.
➝New flavor combinations: raspberry + tequila, meyer lemon marmalade + vodka + rosemary, or maybe something savory like tomato jam + vodka + chives + seltzer/tonic? Could be interesting. Share other ideas in the comments.

Oh, and can someone please tell me when this heat is supposed to let up? It’s getting a little melty in Snowflake Kitchen. Til then, I’ll tide myself over with these.

Ginger Pear Whiskey Smash

Sometimes you just need a cocktail. For whatever reason – hard day at work, grumpy mood, nasty commute… or cause you have all the delicious ingredients on hand and why not? Or – as seems to be happening more frequently around here – you look in the larder and find inspiration in one of your preserves. I had a lovely jar of pears put up in the fall in a light tea-flavored syrup. Thus, a cocktail was born.

Ginger Pear Whiskey Smash
1 part Jameson Irish Whiskey
1 part sugar syrup
1 whole preserved pear, cut into chunks
3 pieces crystallized ginger – 2 to muddle, 1 to garnish
Ice

Open your jar of pears or use fresh. Cut into small chunks. Add fresh or crystallized ginger. Muddle with equal parts whiskey and syrup. Let flavors mix for 5ish minutes… or however long you can stand it. Strain, pour over ice into your glass of choice and top with ginger ale.  Garnish with crystallized ginger, relax and enjoy.

Options
1. Use Jameson Irish Whiskey. Accept no substitutes. If you don’t like whiskey, this drink isn’t for you. I would suggest that you try it though, it tends to win over converts.
2. You need one part syrup. I used a combination of the pear/tea syrup and some simple syrup. To taste – as sweet as you like. I bet infusing ginger into the tea syrup for a more pronounced ginger flavor would be great.
3. Many of the other whiskey smash recipes I’ve found use herbs. Like Bless Her Heart’s Blackberry Smash and The Kitchn’s Peach Whiskey Smash. I bet thyme or mint would be a fun addition to this one.