People come to Cooking by the Book for many reasons: corporate team building, birthday parties and — more and more — bridal events. Bridal showers and bachelorette parties are on our calendar every weekend.
I love the enthusiasm and joy of these events where women celebrate this most important step forward in life.
Naturally, if it’s that important, people want to party and enjoy some creative new beverages. For Sunday afternoons, I have found people asking for and loving this Sparkling Mojito Martini, another wonderfully inspired drink from Kim Haasarud. It does carry a punch, but I’ve had no complaints. The flavor balance here is excellent. In one drink, you can have your mint, citrus, vodka, and sparkling taste buds all satisfied.
This drink scales up beautifully, so this recipe for one person can quickly grow for ten or twenty. You’ll just need to do the “shaker” routine three or four drinks at a time.
This recipe calls for a chilled martini glass. That’s a key touch for a sophisticated cocktail. You can make sure the chill stays by filing each glass with crushed ice before filling with the cocktail. And, before you do that, you can give the drink a zing by rimming each glass with lemon or lime juice, then dipping into super fine sugar.
Better yet, the day before, put the zest of two lemons in a container, add two cups of superfine sugar and stir to mix. That citrus sugar is a clever entry point for the spirits deep in the glass.
Sparkling Mojito Martini
Yield: 1 drink
- 5 to 7 mint leaves
- 1 ounce fresh lime juice
- 1 ounce simple syrup
- 1 ½ ounces citrus vodka
- 1 ½ ounces light and dry champagne
Combine the mint leaves with the lime juice and simple syrup. Muddle lightly and add the citrus vodka and ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled martini glass. Top off with the champagne. Garnish with an additional mint sprig.
Source: 101 Champagne Cocktails by Kim Haasarud
Apricots. It’s been a wet and cold spring, but the first apricots have arrived. Small, yet intense in flavor, they provide the mixologist true opportunity. Instead of a peaches and Bellinis, here’s a way to use those early apricots and create a wonderful cocktail.
Unlike most of my creations, this is NOT too sweet. And, I used grapefruit bitters as well, so there is a definite “sour” undertone to this drink. It’s a great Sunday brunch beverage that will complement smoked salmon and capers.
Yield: 4-6 drinks
- 6 apricots [enough for 1 ½ cups when sliced]
- ¼ cup sugar syrup
- Grapefruit bitters
Peel and slice the apricot. Put them in a blender along with sugar syrup. Process until very smooth. Refrigerate for at least one hour before using.
In champagne flute, put 2-3 tablespoons of the apricot puree in the bottom. Add ¼ teaspoon of grapefruit bitters. Slowly top off the flute with Proseco. Enjoy and refill as needed.
Source: Brian O’Rourke