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Scott Harris of Catoctin Creek Distillery came up to New York City this week to celebrate the New York launch of Catoctin Creek’s spirits line, and I tagged along with him to a bunch of his events!

cut for length! )

If you live in New York, or any of the other states where it is available make sure to try Catoctin Creek’s spirits!

Mirrored from Nommable!.

teaberryblue: (Vector Me!)

Scott Harris of Catoctin Creek Distillery came up to New York City this week to celebrate the New York launch of Catoctin Creek’s spirits line, and I tagged along with him to a bunch of his events!

One of my oldest friends, Emily, has been working for them, and introduced me to their liquor about a year ago– she poured a little bit of gin into a metal thermos for me to take home with me after a lovely brunch. I started experimenting with it right away– their gin is very friendly to folks who aren’t crazy about strong juniper flavors, with a really nice mix of different herbs that gives it a unique profile. In November, Scott and Emily invited me to go out for a drink with them, and then Scott did an impromptu tasting of the rest of their line– and sent me home with a bottle of each of their flagship spirits– Mosby’s Spirit, a white whiskey, Roundstone Rye, and the Watershed Gin I mentioned above.

Then I went down to the distillery in January and met Scott’s wife, Becky, and got to sit in on a special session where they taught us about the distillation process. I already knew a little bit about distilling, but this really improved my knowledge. I also got to play with their bottling line, which was INCREDIBLY AWESOME, and reminded me a lot of playing whack-a-mole, but with gin!

So I was delighted when Scott told me he was going to be in town and asked if I could come to come of his tastings. I met up with him first at the Rum House on Tuesday– but there was a bit of a miscommunication, so no tasting, but we got a drink and some deviled eggs and then went over to Noorman’s Kil, where we got delicious grilled cheeses and beer, and I got to meet Scott’s New York brand ambassador, Kirsten, who was super nice. They had a huge crowd show up to taste the rye. I don’t have photos from that, because it was super dark, but there were loads of very enthusiastic whiskey aficionados. It was getting close to my bedtime, though, so I headed home, and met up again the next day at the Brandy Library.

At the Brandy Library, we had all three of the spirits, and that was really fun– I actually tasted along with the crowd, sort of, except that I got caught up chatting with folks from Scott’s distributor a bit in the process so it took me a while between the rye and the gin, but I eventually got through all three of them. I had a couple really nice cocktails, and then Mayur, who teaches the classes I sometimes take at Amor Y Amargo and who is spearheading the spirits division at Scott’s distributor, showed up, and it was cool to chat with him when he wasn’t behind the bar. I took a whole bunch of photos of that tasting, and one of them ran in Scott’s local paper!

After the Brandy Library, Scott and Kirsten and I went over to Ward III to grab a drink, and then I went home because it was my bedtime!

Then, on Friday, Scott had a tasting at The Whiskey Shop. I’d never been there before– largely because it’s in Brooklyn and a touch out of the way for me to go to buy spirits, but this place is awesome and if you live nearby, I highly recommend going in. I spent most of the time chatting with Jon, the shopkeeper, who is incredibly knowledgeable and incredibly fun, and let me taste a couple of samples of different things.

The people who came into The Whiskey Shop were all really interesting people who wanted to converse about spirits, which was fun. I talked to a whole bunch of different people there about different things. Once that was over, Jon suggested we go to Kinfolk’s Yuji Ramen around the corner, which was a perfect, delicious little meal. It was a great end to the week. I had so much fun getting to see all these different tastings, how different people taste spirits, and the kinds of questions people asked.

If you live in New York, or any of the other states where it is available make sure to try Catoctin Creek’s spirits!

Mirrored from Nommable!.

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This weekend, we harvested the hops in our garden.

Hops are a beautiful thing. Just the scent that ripples off them while I was picking them was so elegant, floral and bitter at the same time.

The thing about hops, though, is that they are miserably underused. They’re basically only used in beers and some bitters, and once in a while in something like a brine or an infusion of some kind. (I brine my turkey for Thanksgiving in heavily-hopped beer). But hops in other things? Not much. They’re woefully underappreciated for something with such a unique and sophisticated flavor.

Fresh hops only happen once a year, in September or sometimes early October, and they’re so delicious. So this weekend, I made a cocktail with them:

Cocktail: Hop To It
Recipe Type: Cocktail
Author: Tea
Prep time: 4 mins
Total time: 4 mins
Serves: 1
This is a drink made with fresh hops from my garden.
Ingredients
  • 10 fresh hops blossoms
  • 2 oz Comb 9 Gin
  • 1/2 oz Ethereal Gin
  • 1/2 oz Bo Nardini Bassano Rue Grappa
  • 2 dashes Adam Elmegirab’s Dandelion & Burdock Bitters
  • 1/4 oz Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA
Instructions
  1. ) Put both Gins and the hops blossoms in a shaker with ice. Muddle thoroughly until flower petals separate.
  2. ) Add grappa and bitters, shake
  3. ) Coat chilled cocktail glass with beer, pour off excess
  4. ) Pour contents of shaker into glass and serve

 

notes:
Comb 9 is a gin distilled with honey. If you can’t get it, I recommend a lighter and more floral gin, like Damrak, Greylock, or Death’s Door.
Ethereal has a fairly unique smoky flavor profile. The only other gin that comes close to it is Catoctin Creek. If you can’t get either of those, I would recommend a 1/4 oz more of the base gin with a 1/4 oz of mezcal.
Bo Nardini Bassano Rue Flavored Grappa is exactly what it says it is. If you can’t get it, any plain or herbal grappa with do (stay away from fruity ones)
Adam Elmegirab’s Dandelion & Burdock Bitters can be bought at Cocktail Kingdom. If you can’t get them, Angostura or another herby bitters (not a fruit-flavored one) is fine.
I am not sure where you can find hops! I grow them myself!

Mirrored from Nommable!.

teaberryblue: (Vector Me!)

This weekend, we harvested the hops in our garden.

Hops are a beautiful thing. Just the scent that ripples off them while I was picking them was so elegant, floral and bitter at the same time.

The thing about hops, though, is that they are miserably underused. They’re basically only used in beers and some bitters, and once in a while in something like a brine or an infusion of some kind. (I brine my turkey for Thanksgiving in heavily-hopped beer). But hops in other things? Not much. They’re woefully underappreciated for something with such a unique and sophisticated flavor.

Fresh hops only happen once a year, in September or sometimes early October, and they’re so delicious. So this weekend, I made a cocktail with them:

Cocktail: Hop To It
Recipe Type: Cocktail
Author: Tea
Prep time: 4 mins
Total time: 4 mins
Serves: 1
This is a drink made with fresh hops from my garden.
Ingredients
  • 10 fresh hops blossoms
  • 2 oz Comb 9 Gin
  • 1/2 oz Ethereal Gin
  • 1/2 oz Bo Nardini Bassano Rue Grappa
  • 2 dashes Adam Elmegirab’s Dandelion & Burdock Bitters
  • 1/4 oz Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA
Instructions
  1. ) Put both Gins and the hops blossoms in a shaker with ice. Muddle thoroughly until flower petals separate.
  2. ) Add grappa and bitters, shake
  3. ) Coat chilled cocktail glass with beer, pour off excess
  4. ) Pour contents of shaker into glass and serve

 

notes:
Comb 9 is a gin distilled with honey. If you can’t get it, I recommend a lighter and more floral gin, like Damrak, Greylock, or Death’s Door.
Ethereal has a fairly unique smoky flavor profile. The only other gin that comes close to it is Catoctin Creek. If you can’t get either of those, I would recommend a 1/4 oz more of the base gin with a 1/4 oz of mezcal.
Bo Nardini Bassano Rue Flavored Grappa is exactly what it says it is. If you can’t get it, any plain or herbal grappa with do (stay away from fruity ones)
Adam Elmegirab’s Dandelion & Burdock Bitters can be bought at Cocktail Kingdom. If you can’t get them, Angostura or another herby bitters (not a fruit-flavored one) is fine.
I am not sure where you can find hops! I grow them myself!

Mirrored from Nommable!.

teaberryblue: (Default)

Cocktail Recipe: The Old City
Recipe Type: Cocktail
Author: Tea
Prep time: 3 mins
Total time: 3 mins
Serves: 1
Plums everywhere!
Ingredients
  • 2 oz Catoctin Creek Gin
  • 1/2 oz Averell Damson Gin Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz Thatcher’s Elderflower Liqueur
  • 1/2 Tb honey
  • 1/4 oz Tenneyson Absinthe
  • 1 umeboshi
Instructions
  1. Add the gin, both liqueurs, the honey and the umeboshi to a pitcher or glass with ice.
  2. Stir it well, until most of the honey is dissolved
  3. Coat one chilled cocktail glass with Tenneyson
  4. Strain cocktail into glass
  5. Add umeboshi (it should now be coated in honey)
  6. Add bitters
  7. dash Fee Bros Plum Bitters

 

Notes:
–Catoctin Creek is a small batch gin and not available everywhere. If you can’t get it, I’d recommend using Berkshire Mountain Distillers’ Ethereal Gin, which is also not the easiest to get. After that, maybe look for Martin Miller’s, Death’s Door, Comb 9, or New Amsterdam, or ask at your liquor store for something a littler sweeter and more floral than a typical London Dry.
–Averell Damson Gin Liqueur is a gin liqueur made with damson plums. If you can’t find this, substitute a sloe gin. I like The Bitter Truth’s sloe gin, or Plymouth.
–Thatcher’s Elderflower liqueur is just that. If you can’t find it, try St. Germain, but use half the St. Germain.
–Honey comes from bees. You should be able to find that.
–Tenneyson is a lovely white absinthe that is now as anise-y as some absinthes. It has some nice juniper and pepper to it. I would recommend finding another white absinthe (not green absinthe!) or leaving this out.
–Umeboshi are dried pickled ume fruits, which are like a cross between an apricot and a plum. You can get these at an East Asian food market. If you can’t find these, use a pickled or brandied cherry, as our dried apricots are nothing like this.
–Fee Bros’ Plum Bitters is not too difficult to find, but may be a challenge. I recommend using another fruit bitters in its place– Fee Bros’ Rhubarb tends to be more ubiquitous than the plum.

I have another cocktail recipe, the rose-flavored Montague up on Nommable as well.

Mirrored from Nommable!.

teaberryblue: (Vector Me!)

Cocktail Recipe: The Old City
Recipe Type: Cocktail
Author: Tea
Prep time: 3 mins
Total time: 3 mins
Serves: 1
Plums everywhere!
Ingredients
  • 2 oz Catoctin Creek Gin
  • 1/2 oz Averell Damson Gin Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz Thatcher’s Elderflower Liqueur
  • 1/2 Tb honey
  • 1/4 oz Tenneyson Absinthe
  • 1 umeboshi
Instructions
  1. Add the gin, both liqueurs, the honey and the umeboshi to a pitcher or glass with ice.
  2. Stir it well, until most of the honey is dissolved
  3. Coat one chilled cocktail glass with Tenneyson
  4. Strain cocktail into glass
  5. Add umeboshi (it should now be coated in honey)
  6. Add bitters
  7. dash Fee Bros Plum Bitters

 

Notes:
–Catoctin Creek is a small batch gin and not available everywhere. If you can’t get it, I’d recommend using Berkshire Mountain Distillers’ Ethereal Gin, which is also not the easiest to get. After that, maybe look for Martin Miller’s, Death’s Door, Comb 9, or New Amsterdam, or ask at your liquor store for something a littler sweeter and more floral than a typical London Dry.
–Averell Damson Gin Liqueur is a gin liqueur made with damson plums. If you can’t find this, substitute a sloe gin. I like The Bitter Truth’s sloe gin, or Plymouth.
–Thatcher’s Elderflower liqueur is just that. If you can’t find it, try St. Germain, but use half the St. Germain.
–Honey comes from bees. You should be able to find that.
–Tenneyson is a lovely white absinthe that is now as anise-y as some absinthes. It has some nice juniper and pepper to it. I would recommend finding another white absinthe (not green absinthe!) or leaving this out.
–Umeboshi are dried pickled ume fruits, which are like a cross between an apricot and a plum. You can get these at an East Asian food market. If you can’t find these, use a pickled or brandied cherry, as our dried apricots are nothing like this.
–Fee Bros’ Plum Bitters is not too difficult to find, but may be a challenge. I recommend using another fruit bitters in its place– Fee Bros’ Rhubarb tends to be more ubiquitous than the plum.

I have another cocktail recipe, the rose-flavored Montague up on Nommable as well.

Mirrored from Nommable!.

teaberryblue: (Default)

I bought my mother a bottle of G’Vine Nouaison this week and we went through pretty much the whole bottle over the course of one weekend, which we rarely do because usually I make drinks with completely different ingredients every day, but this was just so good with herbs that I kept playing around with it.

There is also a special quiz question for you today: What do the names of all these drinks have in common?

1) Dig Ophelia

Ingredients
2.5 oz G’Vine Nouaison
.5 oz Bo Nardini Rue Grappa
.25 oz St. Germain
5 sprigs lavender
1 tsp honey
2 dashes Fee Bros Grapefruit Bitters

Instructions
Add gin, grappa, and lavender to shaker, muddle
Coat chilled cocktail glass with St. Germain
Add honey to shaker and shake
Strain into glass and add bitters

2) Citizen Charlotte

Ingredients
2.5 oz G’Vine Nouaison
.5 oz Etrog Citron Liqueur
.25 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth
1 Tb thyme
1/2 of a garlic scape

Instructions
Chop scape into 1/2″ chunks
Put all ingredients except vermouth in shaker, muddle
Coat cocktail glass with vermouth
Shake contents of shaker and strain into glass!

3) Dalton Trumbo

Note: I used wild black caps for this drink. If you can’t get black caps, regular raspberries are probably the best suitable replacement. Here’s a picture of black caps in case you live somewhere where wild berries are plentiful:

So that is what is in the drink!

Ingredients
3 oz G’Vine Nouaison
4 sprigs of oregano plus one for garnish
5 black caps plus 2 for garnis
1 tsp honey

Instructions
1) Put all ingredients in shaker, muddle until berries are well-crushed and gin is bright pink.
2) Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass
3) Garnish with oregano and additional berries

Thank you to [info]gildedage who is my new official Drink Entitler Person.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

I bought my mother a bottle of G’Vine Nouaison this week and we went through pretty much the whole bottle over the course of one weekend, which we rarely do because usually I make drinks with completely different ingredients every day, but this was just so good with herbs that I kept playing around with it.

There is also a special quiz question for you today: What do the names of all these drinks have in common?

1) Dig Ophelia

Ingredients
2.5 oz G’Vine Nouaison
.5 oz Bo Nardini Rue Grappa
.25 oz St. Germain
5 sprigs lavender
1 tsp honey
2 dashes Fee Bros Grapefruit Bitters

Instructions
Add gin, grappa, and lavender to shaker, muddle
Coat chilled cocktail glass with St. Germain
Add honey to shaker and shake
Strain into glass and add bitters

2) Citizen Charlotte

Ingredients
2.5 oz G’Vine Nouaison
.5 oz Etrog Citron Liqueur
.25 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth
1 Tb thyme
1/2 of a garlic scape

Instructions
Chop scape into 1/2″ chunks
Put all ingredients except vermouth in shaker, muddle
Coat cocktail glass with vermouth
Shake contents of shaker and strain into glass!

3) Dalton Trumbo

Note: I used wild black caps for this drink. If you can’t get black caps, regular raspberries are probably the best suitable replacement. Here’s a picture of black caps in case you live somewhere where wild berries are plentiful:

So that is what is in the drink!

Ingredients
3 oz G’Vine Nouaison
4 sprigs of oregano plus one for garnish
5 black caps plus 2 for garnis
1 tsp honey

Instructions
1) Put all ingredients in shaker, muddle until berries are well-crushed and gin is bright pink.
2) Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass
3) Garnish with oregano and additional berries

Thank you to [info]gildedage who is my new official Drink Entitler Person.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

Or, you know, five. Which is how many new ones that are worth sharing I’ve made since the last time I did a cocktail post apart from the strawberries. Holy heck! How did I go that long? What is wrong with me?!

I am feeling uncreative and beyond naming things right now. Which you may have noticed from my last post where I just started naming things “strawberry” in different languages. I figure the options right now are 1) sit around naming them for the next hundred years or 2) just throw ‘em up without names. If you want to volunteer names, go for it!

1)

Ingredients
2 1/2 oz Small’s Gin
1/2 oz Scarborough Faire Gin (homemade infusion! I make it with Gale Force Gin and 1/2 cup each parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme)
2 sprigs oregano
1 small plum,
1/2 oz lavender syrup
1/4 oz Branca Menta

Instructions
Add cut up plum, 1 sprig oregano and regular gin to shaker.
Muddle, then add Scarborough Faire gin & syrup. Shake.
Coat chilled cocktail glass with Branca Menta, discard excess.
Pour drink into glass, add oregano for garnish.

2)

Ingredients
2 oz Magellan Blue Gin
1 oz Carpano Antica Formula
1/2 oz limoncello
1 rib rhubarb plus a small piece of rhubarb for garnish
1 Tb lemon thyme
3 dashes Fee Bros Rhubarb bitters

Instructions
Add gin, thyme and chopped rhubarb to shaker, muddle well
Add Carpano Antica & limoncello and shake
Pour into chilled cocktail glass and add bitters
Garnish with leftover piece of rhubarb!

3)

Ingredients
2 oz Dogfish Head Jin
1oz Dolin dry vermouth
1/2oz Domaine de Canton
1Tb purple basil + 1 leaf for garnish
1Tsp Vietnamese coriander (this is different from your more typical coriander/cilantro and has broad, flat, shiny leaves) +1 leaf for garnish
1 hot pickled pepper
1/8 tsp cinnamon
Bottle Green Ginger & Lemongrass Soda to top

Instructions
Soak pepper in gin for five minutes.
Add gin (with pepper), basil, lemongrass, and Domaine de Canton to shaker, muddle.
Add vermouth & cinnamon, shake
Pour into highball glass with ice, add soda until glass is full. Garnish with leaves.

4)

Ingredients
2 1/2 oz Ethereal Gin
1/2 oz Averna amaro,
1/2 oz Heering Cherry Liqueur
10 bruised sage leaves (Bruise the sage leaves by running your index finger and thumb in opposite directions against the leaf)

Instructions
Put all ingredients in a glass. Muddle, then shake.
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Easy!

5)

Okay, I have to say, this is the best drink of the bunch. And it’s vodka. Vodka! My mother wanted a drink to showcase our new honey, so this is seriously made with honey RIGHT out of the hive. How awesome is that? But you should all try it. I recommend a lighter honey. Clover is probably fine, or acacia or tupelo.

Ingredients
3oz Comb Vodka
1/4 oz Mathilde peche
1/2 oz freshly extracted honey (any honey will do if you are not a nerd like me)
1 tb fresh lavender plus a sprig of lavender blossom for garnish
2 tb fresh mint.

Instructions
Add vodka, lavender and mint to shaker, muddle just until leaves are bruised.
Add honey and shake.
Coat chilled cocktail glass with Mathilde peche
Pour drink into glass, garnish.

Whew, okay, now I am caught up with the drinky-drinks.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

Or, you know, five. Which is how many new ones that are worth sharing I’ve made since the last time I did a cocktail post apart from the strawberries. Holy heck! How did I go that long? What is wrong with me?!

I am feeling uncreative and beyond naming things right now. Which you may have noticed from my last post where I just started naming things “strawberry” in different languages. I figure the options right now are 1) sit around naming them for the next hundred years or 2) just throw ‘em up without names. If you want to volunteer names, go for it!

1)

Ingredients
2 1/2 oz Small’s Gin
1/2 oz Scarborough Faire Gin (homemade infusion! I make it with Gale Force Gin and 1/2 cup each parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme)
2 sprigs oregano
1 small plum,
1/2 oz lavender syrup
1/4 oz Branca Menta

Instructions
Add cut up plum, 1 sprig oregano and regular gin to shaker.
Muddle, then add Scarborough Faire gin & syrup. Shake.
Coat chilled cocktail glass with Branca Menta, discard excess.
Pour drink into glass, add oregano for garnish.

2)

Ingredients
2 oz Magellan Blue Gin
1 oz Carpano Antica Formula
1/2 oz limoncello
1 rib rhubarb plus a small piece of rhubarb for garnish
1 Tb lemon thyme
3 dashes Fee Bros Rhubarb bitters

Instructions
Add gin, thyme and chopped rhubarb to shaker, muddle well
Add Carpano Antica & limoncello and shake
Pour into chilled cocktail glass and add bitters
Garnish with leftover piece of rhubarb!

3)

Ingredients
2 oz Dogfish Head Jin
1oz Dolin dry vermouth
1/2oz Domaine de Canton
1Tb purple basil + 1 leaf for garnish
1Tsp Vietnamese coriander (this is different from your more typical coriander/cilantro and has broad, flat, shiny leaves) +1 leaf for garnish
1 hot pickled pepper
1/8 tsp cinnamon
Bottle Green Ginger & Lemongrass Soda to top

Instructions
Soak pepper in gin for five minutes.
Add gin (with pepper), basil, lemongrass, and Domaine de Canton to shaker, muddle.
Add vermouth & cinnamon, shake
Pour into highball glass with ice, add soda until glass is full. Garnish with leaves.

4)

Ingredients
2 1/2 oz Ethereal Gin
1/2 oz Averna amaro,
1/2 oz Heering Cherry Liqueur
10 bruised sage leaves (Bruise the sage leaves by running your index finger and thumb in opposite directions against the leaf)

Instructions
Put all ingredients in a glass. Muddle, then shake.
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Easy!

5)

Okay, I have to say, this is the best drink of the bunch. And it’s vodka. Vodka! My mother wanted a drink to showcase our new honey, so this is seriously made with honey RIGHT out of the hive. How awesome is that? But you should all try it. I recommend a lighter honey. Clover is probably fine, or acacia or tupelo.

Ingredients
3oz Comb Vodka
1/4 oz Mathilde peche
1/2 oz freshly extracted honey (any honey will do if you are not a nerd like me)
1 tb fresh lavender plus a sprig of lavender blossom for garnish
2 tb fresh mint.

Instructions
Add vodka, lavender and mint to shaker, muddle just until leaves are bruised.
Add honey and shake.
Coat chilled cocktail glass with Mathilde peche
Pour drink into glass, garnish.

Whew, okay, now I am caught up with the drinky-drinks.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

We’ve been growing strawberries for a couple of years now, but somehow, some way, this year, they have completely outgrown our expectations!

Here’s our nifty little strawberry patch:

They are covered, as you can see, with a little tent of netting that is high enough for people to go inside to pick the berries, and also high enough to keep birds away from all but the berries very, very close to the outer perimeter. We still get some slugs this way, but it is the best way to keep your berries from being eaten before you get to do the eating! Notice also that the wide netting means that bees can get in to pollinate! They are good at that.

When the strawberries are ripe, you go under the netting and pick them. Here’s a ripe strawberry along with some not-yet-ripe ones!

So pretty and red!

So far, we are getting tons of strawberries this year:

We got about 3-4 quarts the first week of strawberry picking, and 4-5 quarts the second. And they are big and ripe and juicy. We’ve had strawberries for a couple years now, and each week, we’re getting as many strawberries as we’ve ever gotten in a year before, which is pretty exciting!

We made a whole lot of things with strawberries in them! For two weekends!

so many strawberry foods are under the cut! )

That is the end of the strawberry adventure! FOR NOW!

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

We’ve been growing strawberries for a couple of years now, but somehow, some way, this year, they have completely outgrown our expectations!

Here’s our nifty little strawberry patch:

They are covered, as you can see, with a little tent of netting that is high enough for people to go inside to pick the berries, and also high enough to keep birds away from all but the berries very, very close to the outer perimeter. We still get some slugs this way, but it is the best way to keep your berries from being eaten before you get to do the eating! Notice also that the wide netting means that bees can get in to pollinate! They are good at that.

When the strawberries are ripe, you go under the netting and pick them. Here’s a ripe strawberry along with some not-yet-ripe ones!

So pretty and red!

So far, we are getting tons of strawberries this year:

We got about 3-4 quarts the first week of strawberry picking, and 4-5 quarts the second. And they are big and ripe and juicy. We’ve had strawberries for a couple years now, and each week, we’re getting as many strawberries as we’ve ever gotten in a year before, which is pretty exciting!

We made a whole lot of things with strawberries in them! For two weekends!

Let’s start with a cocktail. I’m going to give you three variations on a similar recipe. I made one for my dad, who pretty much only drinks highballs and punchy drinks with a very little liquor in them, and then I’ll show you how to make a stronger and more sophisticated drink in two ways– one sweeter, one less sweet.

Here’s the Daddy Version:

Daddy Version Ingredients:

1.5 oz vodka
.5 oz limoncello
6 strawberries
Lemonade or Pink Lemonade to top

Daddy Version Instructions:

1) Put vodka in glass with strawberries cut into chunks and muddle well until strawberries are thoroughly pulped.
2) Add ice, limoncello, and lemonade

Here’s the Lady Version:

Lady Version #1 Ingredients:

2.5 oz Dogfish Head Brown Honey Rum
.5 oz limoncello
.5 oz cognac
4 fresh strawberries, plus one for garnish
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon thyme

Lady Version #1 Ingredients:

2 oz Dogfish Head Brown Honey Rum
.5 oz limoncello
1 oz cognac
2 fresh strawberries, plus one for garnish
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon thyme

Lady Version Instructions

1) Add rum, thyme and strawberries (cut into chunks) to shaker with ice
2) Muddle well until strawberries are fully pulped.
3) Add cognac and limoncello
4) Shake!
5) strain into chilled cocktail glasses and serve with a whole strawberry.

But that is only Strawberry Cocktail #1!

Fraise

Ingredients
2.5 oz Rogue Pink Spruce Gin
.5 oz Ramazzotti
.5 oz Domaine de Canton
3 ripe strawberries plus one for garnish
2 dashes Fee Bros Whiskey Barrel Bitters

Instructions
1) Add gin and strawberries (cut into chunks) to shaker with ice
2) Muddle well until strawberries are fully pulped.
3) Add Ramazzotti and Domaine de Canton
4) Shake!
5) strain into chilled cocktail glasses, add two dashes bitters, and serve with a whole strawberry.

This past week, I had the sublime pleasure of having [info]quizzicalsphinx in the house. The thing is, when it comes to our imbibement habits, we could not be more dissimilar. In that I drink copious amounts of excellent liquor and she drinks non-alcoholic beverages only.

So I made her her own very special strawberry drink:

Red Beer

Ingredients
6 strawberries, cut into chunks
3 oz GUS grapefruit soda
.5 oz grenadine
.5 oz pomegranate molasses
Newman’s Own Pomegranate Lemonade to top.

Instructions
Put strawberries in glass with ice and crush with muddler.
Add all other ingredients and stir!

And finally, the last drink, which is a more negroni-style one.

Fragola

Ingredients
2 oz Comb 9 gin
1 oz Carpano Antica Formula
.5 oz Fernet Branca
4 strawberries, cut into chunks
2 dashes Bitter Truth Grapefruit Bitters

Instructions
1) Add gin, ice and strawberries to shaker.
2) Muddle until strawberries are fully pulped.
3) Add Carpano and Fernet Branca, shake.
4) Strain into short glasses, add bitters!

But that isn’t all the strawberry things we made!

My mama also made strawberry shortcake. Let’s talk about strawberry shortcake a little. This is one of my favorite foods. When I was a little kid, there were a couple years when I asked for this instead of for a cake-cake on my birthday. Excellent, huh?

It doesn’t really need a recipe, because all you need to do is whip some cream, make a batch of your favorite biscuits, slice open the biscuits and there you go. Beautiful and delicious!

I also made strawberry ice cream. I’m not as good at fruit ice creams as I am at chocolatey and herbal and caramely type ice creams, but this one came out really well!

Ingredients
2 3/4 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup half & half
1/3 cup sugar
4 egg yolks
2 cups chopped strawberries

Instructions
Whisk the egg yolks and the sugar together until frothy and pasty.
Mix 3/4 cups of the cream and the half & half together in a saucepan, cook just until boiling, remove from heat, wait until it stops bubbling.
Add 1 Tb of the hot cream to the sugar and egg mixture, whisk quickly to keep the eggs from cooking.
Keep adding the hot milk to the sugar and eggs in small increments, whisking and pausing between additions, until 3/4 of the hot milk has been added.
Pour the milk/egg/sugar mixture back into the saucepan, heat over medium heat, stirring frequently until mixture thickens.
Remove from heat and chill for at least four hours.
Once chilled, add heavy cream and stir until well mixed. Stir in strawberries.
Put entire mixture in ice cream mixer and follow instructions for your ice cream mixer until frozen. Put finished ice cream in freezer.
Chill for at least two hours in freezer.
Serve with strawberries, whipped cream, or just plain!

That is the end of the strawberry adventure! FOR NOW!

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

These are mostly for [info]beautyofgrey– photos of the dresses I bought yesterday! All from Nordstrom Rack, all under $50.

I wore this one to work today! I really like the little rosette on it.

I have been having a little love affair with dresses that I probably would never have even considered wearing a couple of years ago. The kind that look frumpy on the hanger! The kind with crazy prints that look like the Von Trapp Family’s discarded curtains. When I started working at King Features, I had to upgrade my wardrobe after a year of working out of my apartment and having to dress for comic shows. I mean, I cuted up, but my cuting up involved cute tee shirts and floofy skirts, and I needed to step it up a little.

This one is a little little-girly, but I freaking loved the fabric too much to pass it up. It’s crazy soft and floaty and reminds me of a dress I had in college, that had butterflies on it in similar colors.

The thing is that at first I was buying slacks and stuff, and that’s just not me. I mean, like I was saying to [info]drjeff, if I had my druthers, I would still be wearing ball gowns and shit like I did in college. And I just had no idea how to dress like me but still like a grownup. It was awkward. I think I posted a bunch of posts here asking people how to dress, but I just didn’t quite get it.

It didn’t help that my body type made dressing hard. I mean, I am lucky in that I’m a normal dress size
(6-8), but my boobs pretty much mean that a lot of clothes are out. Strapless? Out. Strappy? Out. Halter? Nope. Backless? Nope. Nothing with an empire waist or any kind of decoration around the bustline, because it always falls at the wrong place.

This one isn’t my typical style, really, but I really liked the print and the sleeves! I was on a cute floral print kick, apparently! Which I like because so many colors!

And then I started watching Mad Men, and like every single person who has ever seen Mad Men, developed a huge crush on Christina Hendricks. In between fanning myself off, though, I noticed that here’s finally someone who is pretty much exactly my size. We have almost the same measurements and it was like, hello, lightbulb! I can see how all these clothes look on her and try to buy things with similar styles. And that’s what I’ve been doing since, well, the end of last summer. And I never feel like I’ve put something stupid on because I don’t know how to dress anymore!

On to drinks!

Highland Park

Ingredients
2.5 oz G’Vine gin
.5 oz limoncello
1/4 cup fresh lilac blossoms (removed from stems) plus some blossoms for garnish.
.25 oz St. Germain

Instructions
Add gin, limoncello, lilacs to pitcher or glass with ice and muddle well.
Let sit for 5 minutes
Coat 1 chilled glass with St. Germain, discard excess
Pour, garnish with remaining lilacs.

Remedy (This and variations on this is what I was drinking all last week when I was crazy sick)

Ingredients
2 oz Bulldog gin
1 oz Elisir MP Roux
1 Tb local honey

Instructions
Put all ingredients in a pitcher or glass with ice and stir. You need to stir for a while to get the honey to dissolve if you are using thick honey.
Pour into chilled glass!
That is all!

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

These are mostly for [info]beautyofgrey– photos of the dresses I bought yesterday! All from Nordstrom Rack, all under $50.

I wore this one to work today! I really like the little rosette on it.

I have been having a little love affair with dresses that I probably would never have even considered wearing a couple of years ago. The kind that look frumpy on the hanger! The kind with crazy prints that look like the Von Trapp Family’s discarded curtains. When I started working at King Features, I had to upgrade my wardrobe after a year of working out of my apartment and having to dress for comic shows. I mean, I cuted up, but my cuting up involved cute tee shirts and floofy skirts, and I needed to step it up a little.

This one is a little little-girly, but I freaking loved the fabric too much to pass it up. It’s crazy soft and floaty and reminds me of a dress I had in college, that had butterflies on it in similar colors.

The thing is that at first I was buying slacks and stuff, and that’s just not me. I mean, like I was saying to [info]drjeff, if I had my druthers, I would still be wearing ball gowns and shit like I did in college. And I just had no idea how to dress like me but still like a grownup. It was awkward. I think I posted a bunch of posts here asking people how to dress, but I just didn’t quite get it.

It didn’t help that my body type made dressing hard. I mean, I am lucky in that I’m a normal dress size
(6-8), but my boobs pretty much mean that a lot of clothes are out. Strapless? Out. Strappy? Out. Halter? Nope. Backless? Nope. Nothing with an empire waist or any kind of decoration around the bustline, because it always falls at the wrong place.

This one isn’t my typical style, really, but I really liked the print and the sleeves! I was on a cute floral print kick, apparently! Which I like because so many colors!

And then I started watching Mad Men, and like every single person who has ever seen Mad Men, developed a huge crush on Christina Hendricks. In between fanning myself off, though, I noticed that here’s finally someone who is pretty much exactly my size. We have almost the same measurements and it was like, hello, lightbulb! I can see how all these clothes look on her and try to buy things with similar styles. And that’s what I’ve been doing since, well, the end of last summer. And I never feel like I’ve put something stupid on because I don’t know how to dress anymore!

On to drinks!

Highland Park

Ingredients
2.5 oz G’Vine gin
.5 oz limoncello
1/4 cup fresh lilac blossoms (removed from stems) plus some blossoms for garnish.
.25 oz St. Germain

Instructions
Add gin, limoncello, lilacs to pitcher or glass with ice and muddle well.
Let sit for 5 minutes
Coat 1 chilled glass with St. Germain, discard excess
Pour, garnish with remaining lilacs.

Remedy (This and variations on this is what I was drinking all last week when I was crazy sick)

Ingredients
2 oz Bulldog gin
1 oz Elisir MP Roux
1 Tb local honey

Instructions
Put all ingredients in a pitcher or glass with ice and stir. You need to stir for a while to get the honey to dissolve if you are using thick honey.
Pour into chilled glass!
That is all!

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

Yesterday, I opened a bottle of Berkshire Mountain Distillers’ Ethereal Gin. Anyone who keeps sharp tabs knows how much I love their Greylock, so I was really eager to try this.

I’m not sure how to describe it. Ethereal has one of the most unique flavors I’ve ever tasted in a gin, that I can only explain by likening it to the flavor that you get in your mouth when you’re sitting around a bonfire and you breathe in the scent of burning wood. So, really fascinating and complex and difficult. It’s not something I’m just going to sit around and drink, but mixing it was sneaky because I didn’t want to cover up the burning flavor. I tried it with like seven different things and I’m still not 100% happy with this one but the sorrel is something I’ve never used in a cocktail before and that part worked perfectly.

Ephemera

Ingredients

2 oz Ethereal Gin
1 oz Ramazzotti
3 large sorrel leaves
1/8 oz Zirbenz Stone Pine Liqueur

Instructions
Chiffonade the sorrel leaves.
Add Gin, Ramazzotti and sorrel to a pitcher and muddle.
Coat a cocktail glass with Zirbenz, pour out excess.
Strain drink into glass!

Tonight, we had a dinner party, and on account of having to get the house ready, we just ate sandwiches, although saying “just” when discussing these sandwiches is a bit of an understatement. This is my sandwich:

The is prosciutto, salami and capicola with provolone and arugula and a tiny bit of rosemary olive oil. It was to die for.

Also, yesterday: Do you remember my giant asparagi? Well, this one is giving them a run for their money. Also, I think it is getting a job in the adult film industry:

Oh my word.

Then, today, dinner party! )

So I like making negronis but usually when we have company and I am like “negronis!” the company is like “gross!” which is sort of devastating because negronis are my go-to drink. This time, everyone but my father said yes to negronis so I was sort of tickled and I got to make a whole pitcher of this:

Blood Orange Negroni

Ingredients
1.5 oz Rogue Pink Spruce Gin
1 oz Campari
.5 oz red vermouth
Juice from 1/2 blood orange
1 blood orange wedge
10 sage leaves

Instructions
Add gin and 9 sage leaves to pitcher and let sit five minutes
Add campari, vermouth, and juice, plus leftover orange pieces, muddle
Strain into glass and garnish with blood orange wedge and one sage leaf

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

Yesterday, I opened a bottle of Berkshire Mountain Distillers’ Ethereal Gin. Anyone who keeps sharp tabs knows how much I love their Greylock, so I was really eager to try this.

I’m not sure how to describe it. Ethereal has one of the most unique flavors I’ve ever tasted in a gin, that I can only explain by likening it to the flavor that you get in your mouth when you’re sitting around a bonfire and you breathe in the scent of burning wood. So, really fascinating and complex and difficult. It’s not something I’m just going to sit around and drink, but mixing it was sneaky because I didn’t want to cover up the burning flavor. I tried it with like seven different things and I’m still not 100% happy with this one but the sorrel is something I’ve never used in a cocktail before and that part worked perfectly.

Ephemera

Ingredients

2 oz Ethereal Gin
1 oz Ramazzotti
3 large sorrel leaves
1/8 oz Zirbenz Stone Pine Liqueur

Instructions
Chiffonade the sorrel leaves.
Add Gin, Ramazzotti and sorrel to a pitcher and muddle.
Coat a cocktail glass with Zirbenz, pour out excess.
Strain drink into glass!

Tonight, we had a dinner party, and on account of having to get the house ready, we just ate sandwiches, although saying “just” when discussing these sandwiches is a bit of an understatement. This is my sandwich:

The is prosciutto, salami and capicola with provolone and arugula and a tiny bit of rosemary olive oil. It was to die for.

Also, yesterday: Do you remember my giant asparagi? Well, this one is giving them a run for their money. Also, I think it is getting a job in the adult film industry:

Oh my word.

Then, today, dinner party! I forgot to take pictures of the salad, but it was a plain old tricolor. Here is the other stuff we ate!

Antipasti!

This is my invention. It’s polenta spooned on a cookie sheet in disk shapes, topped with prosciutto and baked until the prosciutto is crispy and the polenta is firm, then covered with fried crispy sage and brown butter.

Linguini primavera covered with seafood!

Tiramisu and a raspberry-rhubarb crostada!

So I like making negronis but usually when we have company and I am like “negronis!” the company is like “gross!” which is sort of devastating because negronis are my go-to drink. This time, everyone but my father said yes to negronis so I was sort of tickled and I got to make a whole pitcher of this:

Blood Orange Negroni

Ingredients
1.5 oz Rogue Pink Spruce Gin
1 oz Campari
.5 oz red vermouth
Juice from 1/2 blood orange
1 blood orange wedge
10 sage leaves

Instructions
Add gin and 9 sage leaves to pitcher and let sit five minutes
Add campari, vermouth, and juice, plus leftover orange pieces, muddle
Strain into glass and garnish with blood orange wedge and one sage leaf

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

I am waiting for the Presidential speech to start, but I wrote this up on the train and figured I’d go ahead and post it.

I was so pleased with the violet cocktail on Friday that I decided to try another violet cocktail on Saturday.

Wretched Groom

Ingredients:
1/2 large Bosc Pear
3 oz Greylock gin
13 fresh violets
1 1/2 tsp evaporated cane juice
splash of Cognac
splash of Mathilde Poire liqueur

Instructions:
–Cut two very thin slices of pear, dice remaining pear into 1/2″ cubes
–Reserve three violets, add violets, pear, cane juice and gin to shaker
–Muddle well, until violets and pear are completely macerated
–Add cognac and liqueur
–Shake
–Pour into chilled cocktail glass, garnish with violets and pear slice

I also decided that what with all the violets, I might as well pick as many as possible before they wilt and/or get mowed and try to make my own creme de violette. Yesterday, I picked somewhere in the vicinity of 100-200 violets and cooked them with sugar, but that didn’t taste nearly violet-y enough, so today I picked about a thousand violets and I’m going to try just infusing the fresh violets and see how that works.

So, yes, I spent three hours picking violets. I’m not proud. Or tired.

I also picked slighty-smaller-craploads of dandelions, because I decided I’m going to try making my own bitters. I’m excited because I think I’m going to try using asparagus blossoms in the bitters. I figure if I infuse a bunch of different things separately, then I can try mixing and matching them until I get the right concoction. Bitters often use dandelion greens, but I picked some flowers, too. I’m secretly excited for when the asparagus goes to seed, because asparagus fronds have the most awesome flavor and I can infuse some of those. And sorrel.

Then I used the flowers to make this, partly because [info]supertailz requested a drink using Magellan yesterday, but I’d already gone with Greylock as the iris flavor in Magellan would completely overpower the violets, which are really, really subtle. You know, subtle enough that a hundred of them don’t appear to leave much of a flavor in simple syrup.

Bradbury

Ingredients:
3 oz Magellan gin
6 dandelion blossoms
Splash of Ramazzotti amaro
Splash of Cardamaro
A few droplets of walnut oil

Instructions:
–Reserve one dandelion
–Add dandelions and gin to shaker, muddle until dandelions are completely macerated (they will look like small yellow ribbons)
–Add Ramazzotti and Cardamaro
–Shake and pour
–Garnish with remaining dandelion blossom and walnut oil to taste

In other news, we picked some of the first asparagus of the season. Let’s talk about this asparagus. You know how there’s all that talk about how organic vegetables are necessarily smaller and wimpier than the factory farmed kind?

Yeah? Well MY ASPARAGUS AND I CHALLENGE YOU.

LOOK AT THE SIZE OF THAT ASPARAGUS.

It was also shockingly sweet and tender for the size. I was mightily impressed with our asparagus-growing prowess.

Oh, also, I lied. About the not being tired part.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

I am waiting for the Presidential speech to start, but I wrote this up on the train and figured I’d go ahead and post it.

I was so pleased with the violet cocktail on Friday that I decided to try another violet cocktail on Saturday.

Wretched Groom

Ingredients:
1/2 large Bosc Pear
3 oz Greylock gin
13 fresh violets
1 1/2 tsp evaporated cane juice
splash of Cognac
splash of Mathilde Poire liqueur

Instructions:
–Cut two very thin slices of pear, dice remaining pear into 1/2″ cubes
–Reserve three violets, add violets, pear, cane juice and gin to shaker
–Muddle well, until violets and pear are completely macerated
–Add cognac and liqueur
–Shake
–Pour into chilled cocktail glass, garnish with violets and pear slice

I also decided that what with all the violets, I might as well pick as many as possible before they wilt and/or get mowed and try to make my own creme de violette. Yesterday, I picked somewhere in the vicinity of 100-200 violets and cooked them with sugar, but that didn’t taste nearly violet-y enough, so today I picked about a thousand violets and I’m going to try just infusing the fresh violets and see how that works.

So, yes, I spent three hours picking violets. I’m not proud. Or tired.

I also picked slighty-smaller-craploads of dandelions, because I decided I’m going to try making my own bitters. I’m excited because I think I’m going to try using asparagus blossoms in the bitters. I figure if I infuse a bunch of different things separately, then I can try mixing and matching them until I get the right concoction. Bitters often use dandelion greens, but I picked some flowers, too. I’m secretly excited for when the asparagus goes to seed, because asparagus fronds have the most awesome flavor and I can infuse some of those. And sorrel.

Then I used the flowers to make this, partly because [info]supertailz requested a drink using Magellan yesterday, but I’d already gone with Greylock as the iris flavor in Magellan would completely overpower the violets, which are really, really subtle. You know, subtle enough that a hundred of them don’t appear to leave much of a flavor in simple syrup.

Bradbury

Ingredients:
3 oz Magellan gin
6 dandelion blossoms
Splash of Ramazzotti amaro
Splash of Cardamaro
A few droplets of walnut oil

Instructions:
–Reserve one dandelion
–Add dandelions and gin to shaker, muddle until dandelions are completely macerated (they will look like small yellow ribbons)
–Add Ramazzotti and Cardamaro
–Shake and pour
–Garnish with remaining dandelion blossom and walnut oil to taste

In other news, we picked some of the first asparagus of the season. Let’s talk about this asparagus. You know how there’s all that talk about how organic vegetables are necessarily smaller and wimpier than the factory farmed kind?

Yeah? Well MY ASPARAGUS AND I CHALLENGE YOU.

LOOK AT THE SIZE OF THAT ASPARAGUS.

It was also shockingly sweet and tender for the size. I was mightily impressed with our asparagus-growing prowess.

Oh, also, I lied. About the not being tired part.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

In my house, my father’s version of the Easter Bunny brings me ten bottles of hand sanitizing products. My mother’s version of the Easter Bunny brings me two bottles of gin and a bottle of Ramazzotti.

So, anyway, this is not about any of those bottles. My mom and I tried Comb 9 a few weeks ago because it’s a gin distilled with honey, and I made something with Mathilde Peche, dry vermouth and honey from our bees, and it was pretty good. So when I got in the house and asked her what she wanted, she said Comb 9.

The problem is, my mom and I haven’t been in the house in like three weeks, so there wasn’t anything in the way of fresh fruit or anything. I kind of wanted to make a pear drink, but that’s hard without, you know, pears. We only had some blood oranges and those would totally overwhelm this stuff.

So I went outside to pick some fresh herbs, and this is what I found:

Hundreds of white violets, blanketing the lawn like snow.

We’ve never gotten violets like this before, not in such abundance!

So:

Baudelaire
2.5 oz Comb 9 gin
3/4 oz Domaine de Canton
1 1/2 tsp Evaporated Cane Juice
13 fresh white violets
1 1/2 tsp fresh thyme

1) Reserve three violets
2) Add all other ingredients to a shake
3) Muddle well– you need to crush the violets until they start to become a pulp, not just bruise them
4) Strain through a fine wire mesh into a cocktail glass
5) Garnish with remaining violets

I wasn’t sure if it would work, but it did! The drink got a lovely pale green color and you can actually taste the violets in it! It is flowery and slightly sweet. So if anybody else has a yard full of violets, you should try this!

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

teaberryblue: (Default)

In my house, my father’s version of the Easter Bunny brings me ten bottles of hand sanitizing products. My mother’s version of the Easter Bunny brings me two bottles of gin and a bottle of Ramazzotti.

So, anyway, this is not about any of those bottles. My mom and I tried Comb 9 a few weeks ago because it’s a gin distilled with honey, and I made something with Mathilde Peche, dry vermouth and honey from our bees, and it was pretty good. So when I got in the house and asked her what she wanted, she said Comb 9.

The problem is, my mom and I haven’t been in the house in like three weeks, so there wasn’t anything in the way of fresh fruit or anything. I kind of wanted to make a pear drink, but that’s hard without, you know, pears. We only had some blood oranges and those would totally overwhelm this stuff.

So I went outside to pick some fresh herbs, and this is what I found:

Hundreds of white violets, blanketing the lawn like snow.

We’ve never gotten violets like this before, not in such abundance!

So:

Baudelaire
2.5 oz Comb 9 gin
3/4 oz Domaine de Canton
1 1/2 tsp Evaporated Cane Juice
13 fresh white violets
1 1/2 tsp fresh thyme

1) Reserve three violets
2) Add all other ingredients to a shake
3) Muddle well– you need to crush the violets until they start to become a pulp, not just bruise them
4) Strain through a fine wire mesh into a cocktail glass
5) Garnish with remaining violets

I wasn’t sure if it would work, but it did! The drink got a lovely pale green color and you can actually taste the violets in it! It is flowery and slightly sweet. So if anybody else has a yard full of violets, you should try this!

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

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