For a Festive Caipirinha, Add Pomegranate and Sparkling Wine

 

The Caipirinha is a bit like a Daiquiri, except that it uses sugarcane–based cachaça instead of rum, and whole lime pieces instead of just the juice. It's a bold, tangy, and husky drink, even more so when gussied up with ruby-red pomegranate and festive sparkling wine.

Why It Works

  • This winter cocktail features pomegranates and limes, which are at their peak in the colder months.
  • Cachaça adds an earthy flavor that's boosted by the tannic pomegranate juice.
  • Adding the sparkling wine to the cocktail shaker after the drink is chilled, then pouring the entire contents into the serving glass, helps mix the wine into the drink a bit without losing all of the bubbles.

I consider myself a pretty knowledgeable person when it comes to cocktails. And yet, a few years back, I found myself too intimidated to order a Caipirinha. The problem was the name. My own name is mispronounced about 60% of the time—you're probably saying it wrong right now—so I just hate not knowing how to pronounce a drink's name correctly

However you say it (kye-peer-EEN-yah, shall we practice?), the Caipirinha is delicious. Worth embarrassing yourself in front of a bartender for. It's a bit like a classic Daiquiri, only it calls for sugarcane juice–based cachaça instead of rum, and wedges of lime instead of just the juice. Those swaps give the drink an earthy, husky character that's a fascinating departure from the bright and smooth Daiquiri.

20151104-Sparkling-Pomegranate-Caipirinha-ingredients-Elana-Lepkowski.jpg 

In this wintry variation, the sour bite of the lime gets punched up with sweet-tart pomegranate juice (and fresh pomegranate seeds give it a little crunch). The rosy color feels just right for holiday parties, and a little sparkling wine makes it even more celebratory. The wine serves as a bridge between flavors, heightening the drink's fruitiness and floral notes. In order to incorporate the wine without shaking it (and losing its bubbles), you'll add the bubbly to the shaker last, after everything else is shaken and chilled. Tipping the mixture into your serving glass will help combine the wine with all the other ingredients, so it doesn't just sit on top.

If you don't want to pop open a whole bottle of sparkling wine, consider grabbing a split, which is a quarter bottle—just right for two of these drinks. Once you make one, I'm certain you'll want another.

  • 20151104-Sparkling-Pomegranate-Caipirinha-muddled-Elana-Lepkowski.jpg 

Ingredients

  • 1 barspoon superfine sugar (1 teaspoon; 4g)
  • 10 fresh pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 lime, quartered
  • 1/2 ounce pomegranate juice (1 tablespoon; 15mL)
  • 2 ounces cachaça, such as Leblon (4 tablespoons; 60mL)
  • 3 ounces sparkling wine (6 tablespoons; 90mL)

Directions

  • In the bottom of a mixing glass, add the superfine sugar and pomegranate seeds. Crush the seeds with a muddler to break open. Add lime wedges and muddle 6 times to release their juice. Add pomegranate juice and cachaça and fill glass 2/3 full with ice. Shake until well chilled, about 20 seconds. Add sparkling wine to glass, then pour contents, without straining, into a double rocks glass. Add more fresh ice cubes if desired and serve immediately.

 Source :http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2015/12/sparkling-pomegranate-caipirinha-cachaca-drink-cocktail-recipe.html

Scooped: Prosecco, Lemon, and Ginger Granita Recipe

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I often hear people lament their inability to make frozen desserts for lack of equipment. And I get it—ice cream makers are bulky and expensive enough to be something of an investment, and there's lots of great ice cream and sorbet out there already. But nothing's quite as satisfying as pulling dessert out of the freezer at the end of a long meal—nodding, yes, it is homemade.

For these occasions, we have granita, one of the easiest and most elegant desserts ever made. The ingredients couldn't be simpler, the technique no more elementary. And they wake up the palate like nothing else. No ice cream maker required.

This granita is a dessert and after-dinner drink in one: icy and refreshing before melting into a subtly spiced wine syrup. Depending on your crowd, you can call it granita di prosecco con limone e zenzero or a boozy lemon Sno-Cone. Or just call it the perfect dessert, one that's full of flavor but won't weigh you down.

The alcohol in sparkling wine creates large, flat flakes of ice, like fine sea salt crystals blown up a hundred times. I used Santa Margherita prosecco for a clean, crisp flavor with more than a hint of apple. Lemon and ginger were no-brainer accompaniments that draw the best qualities out of the wine.

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grated ginger, with its juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 cups prosecco (recommended: Santa Margherita)
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 5 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, or to taste
  • Directions

    1. 1.

      In a small saucepan, heat water, sugar, ginger, and salt on low heat for five minutes, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and pour into a wide, flat container like a take-out container or a baking dish. Stir in prosecco, lemon zest, and lemon juice.

    2. 2.

      Transfer container to a flat surface in the freezer. After 45 minutes, run a fork along sides of container to break up any large chunks of ice. Check on granita several times, every half-hour to an hour, gently breaking up chunks of ice with fork. Granita is ready when ice is full of large, irregular flakes with little to no liquid remaining. For best flavor and texture, serve within two days of making.

    3. 3.

      If you can't stir the granita every half hour, let it freeze into a block of ice overnight. The next day, scrape it into flakes with a large fork. The texture won't be quite as light, but it'll come close.

       

      • YIELD:8 to 10
      • ACTIVE TIME:10 minutes
      • TOTAL TIME:6 hours

       

Halloween Orange Marmalade with Black Sesame Seeds Recipe

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I'm a huge fan of autumn, probably because it contains my two favorite holidays: Halloween and Thanksgiving. Even though I'm way too old to go trick-or-treating and I've long since given up my early-20s Halloween antics, All Hallow's Eve resonates through every fiber of my being as the ultimate time of year.

Maybe it's the fact that Fall marks the reappearance of an intense palette of browns, oranges, and reds in the foliage, or it could be that I can finally (FINALLY!) pull out my box of favorite scarves from high up in the closet. There's just something about the chill in the air, the hordes of squash stacked up in pumpkin patches around town, and the iconic images of black cats and pointy-hatted witches that appear everywhere I look. This time of year is special.

As autumn rolls around, jam-making often slows to a trickle in the absence of summer's incredible bounty. In my house, however, we're just getting started. Orange-y hues in the trees means that it's also orange season here in California, making it the perfect season for marmalade.

I like to punch up my marmalade with warming spices, and this recipe is no different. I've added a little ginger to provide a bit of zip for these short, cool days. The addition of black sesame seeds was originally to produce a festive jam for Halloween, but it turns out that they actually lend a lovely earthy flavor and snappy texture to the oranges' tart personality.

Little bits of orange and lemon zest add even more color and texture, making for an experience that pleases not just the tastebuds, but makes for a visual treat as well. This marmalade is now my go-to jamming project for Fall; it's a wonderful addition spread across warm toast or mixed into a bowl or plain yogurt.

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 pounds navel oranges, scrubbed clean
  • 1/2 pound lemons, scrubbed clean
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, from 1 to 2 oranges
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, from 2 to 3 lemons
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons black sesame seeds

Directions

  1. Place a small plate in the freezer so you can test the jam for proper thickness later.
  2. Use a zester to remove the zest from half of the oranges and two of the lemons. Add the zest to a large, deep, heavy-bottomed pot. Remove the remaining peels from all of fruit. Wrap the peels in a cheesecloth bag, tied up with a string so it doesn't fall open, and add the bag to the pot.
  3. Use a sharp knife to cut the oranges and lemons in between the pith into clean segements making sure to work over a bowl to catch any escaping juice. Squeeze remaining pith and discard. Pulse the fruit in a food processor two or three times, just enough to chop the segments into coarse chunks that are about 1/2-inch across. Add the fruit to the pot with the zest and peels. Strain the juice you saved while segmenting the fruit and add it to the pot, along with the rest of the orange and lemon juice.
  4. Add 2 1/2 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once boiling, lower heat to low and simmer for 25 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Once the bag of rinds is cool enough to touch, use your hands to wring as much juice as possible from the rinds. Discard the bag.
  5. Add ginger, vanilla, sugar, and butter to the pot, stirring well to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the fruit begins to bubble and spit. Cook for 15 minutes longer, stirring frequently to keep the fruit from sticking to the bottom of the pot, and lower heat if threatening to stick. Add sesame seeds and cook for another 15 minutes, continually stirring to keep the bottom from burning.
  6. Begin testing the marmalade for doneness: Spread 1/2 teaspoon of cooked fruit on the cold plate and place it back in the freezer. Wait 30 seconds, then run your finger through the fruit. It should be thick enough to maintain a path when you run your finger through it. If you’d like thicker marmalade, place the plate back in the freezer and cook the fruit for another 4 minutes and test again. Repeat until desired thickness is achieved, but be careful about cooking too long or you will alter the taste of your marmalade.
  7. Remove pot from heat and use a spoon to skim any foam from the surface of the fruit. Ladle marmalade into sterilized jars and process them in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. Unopened jars will keep at room temperature for up to 6 months. Opened marmalade should be refrigerated.

Source :http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2012/10/halloween-orange-marmalade-with-black-sesame-seed-recipe.html

Vandaag's New Amsterdam Toddy Recipe

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"The problem with most cider drinks is that they just hang around on a hot plate all day," says Vandaag's Martim Smith-Mattsson, "so the flavors get too concentrated." Here, he allows Laird's Bonded Applejack "to do most of the work," delivering powerful apple flavor and the fruit's crisp acidity without that all-too-familiar boiled-down sweetness.

His cider is subtly spiced with cardamom, cinnamon, clove, ginger, and a bare floral hint of lavender (recipe included). Orange peels and orange curacao add complementary citrus flavors without things getting too juiced up.

Adjust spices to your liking, but pay particular attention to quantity and steeping time if you use lavender; it can easily turn bitter or overly floral.

Ingredients

  • For mulled cider
  • 1 gallon apple cider
  • 60 grams dried lavender
  • 10 sticks cinnamon
  • 5 lemons, halved
  • 4 cups honey
  • 60 grams whole cardamom pods
  • 12 one-inch pieces fresh ginger root, peeled
  • Peels of 5 oranges
  • 15 grams whole cloves
  • 5 dashes Angostura bitters
  • For each drink
  • 4 ounces hot mulled cider
  • 1/2 ounce orange curacao
  • 1 ounce Laird's Bonded Applejack

Directions

  1. In a large pot, simmer cider with lavender, cinnamon, lemons, honey, cardamom pods, ginger, orange peel, cloves, and bitters over low heat for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cover with plastic wrap. Let steep 8 minutes, then strain.
  2. For each drink, add 4 ounces warmed mulled cider to a mug with orange curacao and applejack. Stir and serve hot.
  • YIELD:makes 1 gallon cider (enough for 32 servings)
  • ACTIVE TIME:10 minutes
  • TOTAL TIME:40 minutes

 

source: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/12/vandaags-new-amsterdam-toddy.html

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