Category Archives: Drinks

Chipotle Bacon Margaritas

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I promised (on my Facebook page earlier this week), and now I’m delivering: my chipotle bacon margaritas!!! Back story as to how this drink came about – when I made Bacon Salt for my Secret Recipe Club pick, Matt immediately insisted that some of it be reserved for rimming a margarita glass.

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I concurred, enthusiastically, but the question then became: on what kind of margarita? Bacon is of course salty and smoky, and since this is my brain we’re talking about, chipotle immediately came to mind. Sigh. No surprise there.

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Oh well, I stand by it! Especially after tasting this bad boy. It is so delicious. Yes, it is spicy, and definitely salty. I use one sugar cube in here to cut the spiciness, but this really isn’t a sweet margarita. The smokiness of the bacon really melds with the spiciness of the drink. I just loved it!

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I minced up half of one chipotle in adobo for this drink, and depending on the size of the holes in your strainer, you may end up with little bits of chipotle floating in your drink. That didn’t bother me at all, I liked it in fact, but if that doesn’t appeal to you, I’d advise straining your cocktail through a fine-mesh sieve into a measuring cup with a pour spout, then pouring the drink into your glasses.

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I hope all you chile head-bacon fiends will enjoy this one!

{One Year Ago: Ultimate Pepperoni Pizza, Bourbon Banana Bread, I Don’t Have Meat Drippings Texas Barbecue Sauce}
{Two Years Ago: Tilapia with Chile Butter and Ricotta Grits Cakes}

Ingredients:
4 oz. silver tequila
2 oz. orange liqueur
2 oz. fresh lime juice
1 sugar cube
Half a chipotle in adobo, chopped
2 tbs bacon salt
¼ tsp chipotle chile powder
Ice
Lime wedges, for rimming

Directions:
Add the tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice, sugar cube, and chipotle in adobo to your cocktail shaker. On a plate or other flat surface, mix together the bacon salt and chipotle chile powder. Using a lime wedge, run it well over the rim of 2 margarita or martini glasses. Carefully dip the edges of both glasses in the bacon salt. Make sure it’s well coated all around.
Add ice to your cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for several seconds. Strain into your glasses. Serve immediately.

Makes 2 drinks

Summer Plum Gin Smash

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In the spirit of using up seasonal summer stone fruit while we still can, let’s have a cocktail! This drink…. I have no words. First of all, this cocktail contains gin. And may I just say, I don’t like gin. I rarely make a drink with it, you can’t pay me to order gin and tonics when I’m out on the town, and I firmly believe that doing a shot of gin is one of the circles of hell that Dante had fully intended to write about, before his publisher must have stopped him from doing so. (It’s the only explanation I can think of, anyway…).

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But you know what? This may be the best cocktail I’ve had all summer. Seriously. I don’t say that lightly. It has gin in it! Did I mention how much I dislike gin? I took one sip and simply didn’t care. This is beyond delicious.

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Fresh summer plums get muddled all to hell, then mixed with good gin and thyme, and lemon, and then the drink is strained into glasses where it sits all pretty and pink and out of this world fantastic. Did I mention I don’t like gin?

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So if you saw this and were tempted to pass because you too do not care for gin, then well, you don’t really have much excuse to not make this. It’s one of the best cocktails I’ve tasted, even with all that gin in there. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks}
{Two Years Ago: Spicy Coleslaw, Pulled Pork Sliders, Cherry Sorbet}

Source: slightly adapted from Shake: A New Perspective on Cocktails by Eric Prum and Josh Williams

Ingredients:
3 cubes cane sugar
4 small summer plums, pitted and quartered
4 small sprigs of thyme (plus extra for garnish)
2 shots gin
½ shot fresh lemon juice

Directions:
Add the cane sugar cubes, plums, and thyme sprigs to a cocktail shaker. Muddle the ingredients in the bottom of the shaker until thoroughly crushed and the sugar has mostly dissolved.
Add the gin, lemon juice, and ice to above the level of liquid and shake vigorously for 15 seconds.
Strain the mixture into martini glasses, chilled if desired, and garnish with some thyme leaves or sprigs. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 drinks.

Raspberry Vanilla Soda

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Ah, soda. Or pop. Or coke. Whatever you and your region call it, it remains many a human being’s guilty pleasure. Fortunately, it’s easy to make at home, where you can control the ingredients. Oh, and homemade soda has way more flavor, tastes really fresh, and isn’t full of chemicals that make you feel like you can’t stop drinking it.

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I found this little gem in Joanne Chang’s cookbook, Flour, Too, and knew I had to try it once raspberry season hit. It didn’t disappoint. So richly flavorful, with strong vanilla overtones that surprisingly don’t fight the tart raspberries. I can assure you, this is a soda you will not find at your local convenience store!

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And, like I said earlier, this isn’t really addictive. I mean, it’s really good, so you do want to keep enjoying it of course, but it’s so much easier to practice moderation on homemade soda than on the commercially made cans.

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Oh, and Matt wanted me to be sure and tell you guys: apparently this is extremely tasty with a little vodka thrown in! So enjoy (spiked or not)!

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{One Year Ago: Corn Chowder}
{Two Years Ago: Cubano Sandwich}

Source: slightly adapted from Flour, Too by Joanne Chang

Ingredients:
1 cup fresh raspberries
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise and seeds scraped out
2 tbs freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbs freshly squeezed lime juice
1 to 1 ¼ cups club soda for each drink

Directions:
In a small saucepan, combine the raspberries, sugar, vanilla seeds and the bean itself, and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and let steep for 1 hour.
Pick out the vanilla beans and then transfer this mixture to a blender. Puree, then strain the mixture through a sieve placed over a small bowl or large glass measuring cup to remove most of the raspberry seeds. Add the lemon and lime juices to the raspberry puree and stir to combine. Refrigerate the syrup if not using immediately.
For each drink put 3 tbs raspberry syrup in the bottom of a drinking glass, then fill the glass with ice. Pour in the club soda. Stir gently with a long spoon until well mixed, then serve immediately.

Strawberry Mango White Sangria #SundaySupper

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Welcome to Sunday Supper! Our theme this week was Summer Chillin’, which means that everyone is bringing you a delicious recipe that is to be served cold. Sounds good to me!

June in NYC can be a bit odd – it starts with Needing a Sweatshirt to Go Outside and ends with Sweltering Humidity, Ugh, despite the temps not being all that high. Then July usually oscillates between Gorgeous Summer Days and Too Hot to Think Straight.

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I adore New York summers, and thanks to growing up in triple-digits-for-two-months Texas, I actually find summer up here to be quite tolerable – most days. There are a few days here and there where the temperature does rise uncomfortably high and pair that with the humidity up here? Ouch. You desperately need something chilled to drink.

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Enter this amazing, refreshing sangria that goes down a bit too easy and showcases beautiful summer fruit. I highly recommend this the next time you need a little cooling off. Enjoy!

Recipe notes: you can make this on the sweeter side or not. Choosing pinot grigio and lemon-lime soda will make it sweeter. Choosing sauvignon blanc and club soda will make it less so. You can go one or the other combination or mix it up in whatever way you want.

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And don’t forget to check out the rest of the fantastic chilled recipes from my Sunday Supper gang!

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Source: Mod Mex by Scott Linquist

Ingredients:
1 small bunch of fresh mint
2 (750-milliliter) bottles of white wine, either pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc
1 large ripe mango, peeled and cubed
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and roughly chopped
1 Navel orange, sliced into rings, rings cut into halves or quarters if desired
1 lemon, sliced into rings
½ cup brandy
1 (12-oz) can lemon-lime soda or club soda

Directions:
Add the mint to a large, glass pitcher. Use a wooden spoon to muddle and bruise the mint to bring out its flavor. Add the wine to the pitcher, then all the fruit and the brandy. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. When ready to serve, add the carbonated beverage and serve over ice.

Brisk Beverages

Chilled Starters

Snappy Salads and Sides

Refreshing Main Dishes

Cool Confections

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET.  Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Watermelon Mojitos

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Happy Fourth of July!!! Today I am concluding my week of Watermelon Recipes with this delicious little libation, perhaps perfect for your holiday shindigs! My particular northeast area is experiencing the margins of Hurricane Arthur this year, so we’ll need something to cry into as our beach plans got ruined.

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I hope you are having better weather than me, and that you have a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend (don’t you just love it when July 4th falls on a Friday?!? It’s the best!). Please help yourself to one of these summery mojitos – they are a wonderful watermelon twist on the original drink. Enjoy!

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Oh and don’t forget – this week we also saw light and healthy Watermelon Gazpacho with Crab Salad, followed by this crazy-but-true, delicious Watermelon Cream Pie!

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{One Year Ago: Bacon Blue Cheese Burgers}

Source: slightly adapted from Barefoot Contessa How Easy is That? by Ina Garten

Ingredients:
About 15 mint leaves, coarsely torn by hand
1 cup watermelon puree
6 oz. light rum
¼ cup simple syrup
3 tbs freshly squeezed lime juice
Sprig of mint and a watermelon spear/chunk, for garnish

Directions:
Place the mint leaves in a small pitcher and bruise them with a wooden spoon. To the pitcher, add the watermelon puree, rum, simple syrup, and lime juice. Stir to combine. Fill 2 highball glasses with ice and pour the drink into the glasses. Garnish with a mint sprig and a spear of watermelon. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 highball drinks. Could easily scale up for a party, just make the drink in a large pitcher. Could also serve in rocks glasses for smaller servings if desired.

Balsamic Strawberry Lemonade

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Lemonade, especially pink lemonade, tends to remind everyone of childhood, even if you still legitimately enjoy it as an adult. I think we’d all agree that there are drinks out there that are universally considered kid-friendly, and making said drinks more adult-friendly usually involves alcohol.

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Not so with this lemonade! Not that you couldn’t spike it if you so desire – of course you could. But if you are looking for something non-alcoholic that isn’t too cloying that the kids might not enjoy, then this is where you can stop looking. This is a fresh pink lemonade with nothing artificial inside, with a wonderful tartness from the vinegar. Definitely not too sweet, but it also doesn’t scream balsamic vinegar at you like salad dressing does. It’s just there, in the background, mitigating the sometimes too-sweet nature of lemonade.

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I’m thinking this drink would be perfect to set out at a grown-ups-only outdoor shindig this summer. You could put bottles of your hard liquor of choice alongside and let people spike it or not as they pleased. One way or another, your pitcher would be empty soon enough.

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And the kids might like it – I personally don’t know as I did not test this one out on any children. But I can assure you it’s very adult friendly. And delicious. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Oatmeal Cookie Pancakes}

Source: Look + Cook by Rachael Ray

Ingredients:
1 pint strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 tbs good quality aged balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup superfine sugar, or granulated sugar
6 cups water
12 lemons
A few sprigs of mint

Directions:
Place the strawberries and vinegar at the bottom of a glass pitcher. Use a wooden spoon to muddle them together. Let stand while you prepare the rest of the drink.
Add the sugar and 2/3 cup of the water to a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat until the sugar dissolves. Let cool a bit, then pour over the strawberries.
Juice the lemons into a bowl or measuring cup, then pour into the pitcher through a strainer to catch any seeds. Fill the pitcher with the remaining 5 1/3 cups water and stir. Chill or pour over ice into glasses (or both!) and garnish each glass with mint sprigs.

Mesa Grill Margarita

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Fact: Chef Bobby Flay’s first restaurant, Mesa Grill, closed its doors in NYC a few months ago.

Fact: Matt and I are spending this weekend in the Bahamas.

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Now, those probably sound like two completely unrelated statements, but I promise, they’re not. Mesa Grill was one of my favorite restaurants in New York, and I am extremely sad to see it go. However, it lives on in its other locations: Las Vegas, and …… Paradise Island in the Bahamas. Matt and I heavily debated dining at Mesa Grill this weekend, but in the end, decided it would be too much of a pain to get ourselves over there, seeing as our resort is not on the same island. Thankfully, Mesa Grill cuisine can live on in my kitchen, because I have (a signed copy of!!!) the Mesa Grill Cookbook!

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Last weekend I made the Mesa Grill Margarita, which is one of the best and most serious margaritas I’ve ever tasted. It’s not dumbed down in the least, it is STRONG, and you should not plan on driving after one of these. You should also not use bad tequila, because in this instance, you won’t get away with it. The tequila is front and center, so while it doesn’t have to be the most expensive bottle out there, it does need to be a respectable brand. I went with Cuervo 1800 for a less pricey option, but if you want to splurge for something like Patron, well, let’s just say it’s worth it.

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It felt right to share it today. This is a really serious, beautiful drink that will accompany any Mexican food meal so nicely. Or have it at cocktail hour, just because. That works too. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Doughnut Peaches in Bourbon with Sweetened Whipped Cream, Cumin-Cilantro Chicken Sliders, Banana Split Cheesecake Bars}

Source: The Mesa Grill Cookbook by Bobby Flay

Ingredients:
2 oz. silver tequila
1 oz. orange liqueur, such as Triple Sec or Cointreau
1 oz. fresh squeezed lime juice
Ice cubes
1 lime slice
Kosher salt

Directions:
Pour the tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice into a cocktail shaker. Add ice. Shake for 10 seconds. Rub the rim of a glass, either a margarita, martini or rocks glass, with the lime slice, then gently dip in the plate of salt. Strain the mixture into your glass and garnish with the lime slice. Serve immediately.
Makes 1 drink.

Long Island Iced Tea

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Happy, happy Memorial Day weekend, everyone! I feel like celebrating this much-needed three-day weekend with a lovely cocktail. This one is a favorite of mine. Pretty and easy, it goes down pretty easy, too!

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Cheers to a great weekend! Here’s to great weather, grilling, possibly a beach(??), and delicious grub! And maybe this cocktail, too.

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And a huge thank you to all of you who have to work on Monday – may you get paid overtime. Enjoy this one, guys!

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{One Year Ago: Peanut Butter and Rhubarb Jam Sandwiches, Dilled Veal Meat Loaf}

RECIPE:
To make two drinks, you will need:
1 shot each gin, tequila, rum, vodka, and triple sec
Sweet and Sour’s mix
Coca cola
Lemon wedge
Ice cubes

Pour all the alcohol shots into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake to combine, then strain into two glasses filled with ice cubes. Add about 1 inch of Sweet and Sour’s mix to each glass, then top off each glass with coca cola. Garnish with lemon wedges.

Avocado Milkshakes #SundaySupper

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Welcome to another Sunday Supper!! Our theme this week is 5 Ingredients or Less. If you’re a regular reader here, then you have probably surmised by now that this theme is quite difficult for me. I don’t have many recipes fitting that description on my blog, and I don’t really have any of these types in my arsenal of tricks. It’s just not how I tend to cook.

avocados

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So, what to do today? I figured it would be a great excuse to bust out a beverage recipe. Upon perusing the drink section of my Recipe Index, I found more alcoholic beverages than non, and while I’ll likely not pause to reflect on what that might say about me, I did decide to use this excuse to pad the non-alcoholic side.

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Who doesn’t love a good milkshake? Milkshakes are easy and fun to make at home. And my dear husband is an absolute fiend. As in, he doesn’t like me to make them very often because they’re so addictive to him. He’s also absolutely crazy about avocados, so making an avocado milkshake seemed like the right thing to do under the circumstances. If this sounds weird, well, it’s not!

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First of all, a creamier milkshake simply doesn’t exist; and second of all, it doesn’t taste weird at all. It tastes completely natural, like where-have-these-been-all-my-life natural. It’s sweet but still distinctly tastes like avocado, and you’ll be left now knowing that avocados can definitively swing both savory and sweet. So good. Enjoy this one, y’all!

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Oh, and be sure you check out the rest of my Sunday Supper cohorts!

Source: adapted from The Good Stuff Cookbook by Spike Mendelsohn

Ingredients:
2 ripe avocados
Half a 14-oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
1 cup creamy vanilla ice cream or gelato
½ cup whole milk
Whipped cream, for garnish

Directions:
Cut each avocado in half and discard the pit. Scoop out the flesh and put it in your blender. Add the condensed milk, ice cream, and milk. Puree until smooth. Pour into 2 glasses and garnish with a dollop of whipped cream. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 milkshakes.

Appetizers, Salads and Starters

Sides and Accompaniments

Main Dishes

Desserts and Beverages

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET.  Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Chocolate Margaritas

Chocolate Margaritas

Y’all know what day it is today? Besides Saturday, February 22, 2014? Yeah, it’s National Margarita Day!!! That is a thing, as well it very much should be. I do think margaritas may be my favorite cocktail.

Some bloggers and I got together and decided to properly celebrate this wonderful day in grand fashion – we’re all bringing you either a margarita drink or a margarita-themed recipe. It’s gonna be amazing, y’all!

Chocolate margaritas

I’m bringing a drink and a dessert to the party with these chocolate libations. These are some of the most amazing and special margaritas I’ve ever tasted, and if you are not a teetotaler or pregnant, then you NEED these in your life. They were impressively delicious; almost like really good, albeit spiked, chocolate milk. I absolutely loved this drink and can’t wait to find some excuse to make it again! Enjoy!!

chocolate margaritas

And be sure you check out the rest of the virtual Margarita Day party from my fabulous cohorts in crime! Also, I’m no stranger to margaritas on my blog, so here are some you may want to check out:

Apple Cider Margaritas
Beer Margaritas
Blood Orange Margaritas
Frozen Cactus Pear Margaritas

Chocolate Margaritas

{One year ago: Buttermilk Cake with Walnut Praline Topping}

Source: Mexican Made Easy by Marcela Valladolid

Ingredients:
2 tbs grated Mexican chocolate, preferably bittersweet
½ cup chocolate syrup, plus more for the glasses
8 oz. (1 cup) anejo tequila
4 oz. (1/2 cup) chocolate liqueur
2.6 oz. (1/3 cup) orange liqueur
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tsp almond extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon, preferably Mexican canela
Ice cubes

Directions:
Put the grated chocolate on a small plate. Place a circle of chocolate syrup on another small plate. Dip the rim of the glasses in the chocolate syrup, then in the grated chocolate.
In a medium bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the ½ cup chocolate syrup, tequila, chocolate liqueur, orange liqueur, heavy cream, almond extract, and cinnamon.
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice cubes and pour the tequila mixture into the shaker. Shake a few times, then strain into the prepared glasses. Work in batches if need be. Serve immediately.
This makes 3-4 servings, depending on the size of your glasses.

Margaritas:

Margarita Bites: