Category Archives: Beverages

Elderflower Sangria

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Elderflower Sangria

Sangria is one of those wonderfully easy drinks you can throw together at a moment’s notice if you have unexpected company or just feel like snazzing up your regular wine routine. I’ll just go ahead and assume you have a regular wine routine. And that it’s okay to use the word “snazzing.”

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I made this light and refreshing Sangria to go along with the Latin Pork & Tomatillo Stew I brought to a friend’s birthday party. I usually grab a bottle of red wine when I’m craving sangria, but today I thought starting with a dry white wine would make a nice change.

I made the husband pick up a bottle of St. Germain (elderflower liqueur) a few weekends back to make elderflower mimosas for my sister’s birthday. Unfortunately Luckily I had also made a (delicious!) batch of lavender lemonade that morning so the elderflower liqueur went mostly untouched. This left me with the majority of a bottle of elderflower liqueur and no specific plans for it. I’ve just been casually adding it to stuff the past few weeks because it is DELICIOUS. It’s not cheap, but it so fun and fancy. And yummy. And did I mention delicious?

 

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I’m practically swimming in cherries at my house so I pitted and halved a few to include with the plums and blueberries.

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My basic method for making sangria includes a bottle of wine, some fruit, something fizzy, and some type of sweet liqueur. I particularly love doing a red wine sangria with ginger ale and limoncello!

I liked that this sangria wasn’t overly sweet, but if you prefer yours on the sugary-side I’d suggest adding extra triple sec.

Bottoms up!

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Makes: 6 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 750 ml. (1 bottle) dry white wine (I used an un-oaked chardonnay)
  • 1.5 oz orange liqueur (triple sec)
  • 3 oz. Elderflower liqueur (I used St. Germain)
  • 1/4 c. blueberries, halved
  • 1 red plum, sliced thin
  • 1 c. cherries, pitted and halved
  • 2 c. unsweetened sparkling lime water (if you can’t find this, just use club soda and lime juice)

Directions:

  1. Mix the first 6 ingredients.
  2. Let the flavors mingle.
  3. When you’re ready to serve, add the bubbles pour!
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Moroccan Mint Tea

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Moroccan Mint Tea

In an attempt to use up the massive amount of mint I purchased at the Farmer’s Market last week, I decided to make homemade Moroccan Mint Tea to go with the Moroccan Lentil Soup.

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This was so simple I was shocked that it never before occurred to me to make mint tea from fresh leaves.

mntt6Essentially I just boiled water, added some mint leaves, let it steep, then added sugar.

mntt4This was so delicious I drank four cups and then couldn’t sleep because of the sugar. It complimented my soup perfectly and was wonderfully refreshing. Plus, it was a great way to use up some of those mint leaves!

Here’s the recipe:

Makes: 4 Cups

Ingredients:

  • 4 Cups water
  • 20 mint leaves
  • 3 Tbsp. Sugar

Directions:

  1. Boil water.
  2. Reduce to simmer, add mint leaves, wait five minutes.
  3. Strain mint leaves.
  4. Add sugar, stir, pour into cups.
  5. Drink it.

I told you it was easy, right?

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This is definitely going to become a regular thing at our house.

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Nutrition (per serving):

36 calories, 0 g. fat, 42 g. protein, 9 g. carbs, 0 g. fiber. WW PointsPlus: 1

Brazilian Mojito

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Brazilian Mojito

As promised, here is my recipe for a delicious and refreshing drink to go along with yesterday’s Poblano Chicken Tacos with Pipicha.

I’ve dubbed it the “Brazilian Mojito” simply because it’s a fusion of a classic mojito and Brazil’s national cocktail, the Caipirinha.

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The husband and I honeymooned in Brazil last September and sipped Caipirinhas like they were going out of style. We also camped out in a grocery store to borrow some WiFi so we could look up how many ounces of liquor we could stash in our suitcases and still make it through airport security.

The Caipirinha is made from Brazil’s national liquor, Cachaça, which is similar to rum but made with cane sugar instead of molasses. We brought back a few bottles of Cachaça and have been slowly working through them, saving this sweet nectar for special occasions and worthy dinners. You can purchase Cachaça at lots of liquor stores here in the U.S. – try asking at the counter if you can’t find it.

A Caipirinha  is made by muddling lots of fresh lime wedges with sugar, then topped off with Cachaça and ice. If it sounds like a strong drink, that’s because it is. Really strong. And full of sugar, which makes for a fun morning the day after you’ve had a few.

I played off this basic formula by incorporating some mint I picked up at the Farmer’s Market, and a splash of triple sec as a substitute for some of the plain sugar to add a bit more flavor.

Here’s the recipe:

Makes: 1 “Brazilian Mojito”

Ingredients:

  • 1 oz. Cachaça (subsitute rum if you can’t find it)
  • 1 oz. Triple Sec
  • 10 fresh mint leaves
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar (brown sugar works nicely, too)
  • 1/2 lime, cut into 6 wedges
  • Ice
  • Water (I used still, but sparkling would be lovely, too)

Directions:

  1. Using a muddler (or the back of a wooden spoon), work the mint leaves and sugar together in the bottom of a rocks glass. When you think you’re done, muddle it for another 30 seconds. You want it really, really, muddly.
  2. Throw in the lime wedges and muddle for another 60 seconds. Muddle, muddle, muddle.
  3. Fill the glass with ice, and pour the Cachaça and triple sec in over the top. Top it off with water and give it a few swirls with a stir stick. Alternatively, you can make this in a cocktail shaker and pour the whole thing over ice, but I just didn’t see the sense in dirtying another dish.
  4. Garnish with an extra lime wedge, and drink up!

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