Written on August 29, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Lauren Katz
As we all face the end of summer, now is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of all fresh herbs from your garden, local farmer’s market or even your go-to supermarket. Yes, basil makes a killer pesto, and mint is perfect with watermelon and feta, but our leafy green friends make just as big of a flavor statement when paired with vodka, rum, and gin. In honor of More Herbs, Less Salt Day, here are some of our favorite herb-inspired cocktails. Cheers!
The Not-So-Usual Suspects
Want more Thirsty Thursday Ideas?
Written on August 15, 2013 at 4:47 pm , by Judith Pena
Inspired by one of my friends’ favorite shots–the Pickle Back, a whiskey shot chased with pickle juice–the Dirty Pickle Martini is crisp, sour and salty all at once. Though I prefer all of my martinis made with gin, the Dirty Pickle Martini is especially tasty when made with gin. Get ready to say “Cheers!” with this super satisfying and lip puckering cocktail.
Get the recipe: Dirty Pickle Martini
Written on August 8, 2013 at 4:57 pm , by Judith Pena
Paradise found: Author and cocktail kahuna Jeff “Beachbum” Berry shows you how to make three chilled-out classics that will transport you straight to the beach. Paper umbrella optional—but encouraged!
Get the recipes (adapted from Beachbum Berry Remixed, by Jeff Berry):
Drink Tip! Stock your tiki cocktail cart with these two must-have tropical drink ingredients:
- Barrel-aged, oaky gold rum
- Orange-flavored curacao (If you can’t find curacao, use triple sec instead.)
Drink Tip! To get the supercool ocean-blue hue in your drink, add a couple drops of blue food coloring.
More Cocktail Posts:
Written on August 5, 2013 at 10:00 am , by Judith Pena
Sure, beer is great to drink, but it’s also an amazing cooking ingredient too! Don’t believe me? Check out 10 of my favorite beer recipes below in honor of International Beer Day.
The first time I heard of steaming a whole chicken on the grill with the aid of a beer can, all I could think was “That’s Genius!” If you’ve never tried this before, then I urge you to try it ASAP. It’ll be one of your new favorite summertime grilling techniques. I promise.
This easy 7-ingredient recipe is perfect when you have extra cans of Guinness hanging around the house, say after St. Patrick’s Day.
What’s not to love about this hearty soup that brings together two wonderful foods: beer and cheese? Keep this recipe on hand for Oktoberfest and as an easy staple when the cooler months start kicking in.
One of our most popular margarita recipes of all time, this large-batch beer margarita is made in a pitcher and easily serves four people. Bottoms up!
Braising is a super easy technique that infuses chicken with moisture and flavor. In this easy braising recipe, tangy mustard and hoppy beer come together to give this dish an unforgettable flavor.
The Chew host Carla Hall shared this amazing Maryland Crab Boil recipe with us in our September issue (on sale tomorrow). While any light beer will work, we especially love this recipe with a pale ale or IPA (India pale ale).
I’m usually not very impressed by food served in mugs–I’m thinking of you cup-a-soup–but this Buffalo Chicken Chili with Blue Cheese-Corn Mug Toppers is an exception. For this recipe, feel free to use whatever type of beer is your favorite.
When I’m not pairing margaritas with my Tex-Mex food, beer is always my next choice. While the recipe recommends using a light beer, I’m sure the steak would be delicious marinated in a more robust darker beer or even a spicy michelada (which is now sold in cans by Tecate).
Beer-battered and fried? You can dress up any ingredient–onion rings, jalalpeno poppers or cheese sticks–like this and I will be a fan, but beer-battered fried chicken might just be the best. While no specific type of beer is listed, I would recommend going with a light-colored beer to ensure that the end result will have a light, brown and golden fried crust. (A darker beer may make the batter appear dark and may turn even darker when fried.)
This 30-Minute Meal from Rachael Ray was created for her dad who’s from Louisiana. “This is a combination of jambalaya–a local dish–and pasta, which he developed a love for with all of us Italians in the house!” says Rach. I think an amber ale or lager tastes best when combined with the andouille sausage and tomatoes, but feel free to use whatever you have on hand.
Written on July 26, 2013 at 9:30 am , by Nicole Witko
Is tea really the new coffee? You can decide that on your own. But for those of you who are tea fans like myself, let’s take a look at how our bodies benefit from drinking different types of teas. Not a tea drinker? Then it might be time to convert! With the six different types of tea below, you’ll have no problem finding one that’s right for you!
Compared to other teas, black tea has the highest caffeine content and helps to maintain cholesterol levels, cardiovascular function and a healthy circulatory system.
2. Green Tea
Green tea is often popularized as one of the healthiest teas and with good reason too! Green tea has shown to prevent clogging of the arteries, burn fat, counteract oxidative stress on the brain, improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of stroke and neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
3. Oolong Tea
Often served in Chinese restaurants, oolong tea can be a healthy part of your weight loss plan. When it comes to skin disease like eczema, a study revealed that if drinking one liter of oolong tea can provide moderate improvement in your skin after a month.
Add a little glamour to your cup of tea with this Sparkling Tea made from black tea
4. White Tea
White teas are full of healthy antioxidants and are the best tea for your skin and complexion. As white teas are the purest and least processed of all teas, they have the most potent anticancer properties and need to be brewed carefully.
Herbal teas such as peppermint, ginger and lemongrass are rich in vitamin C. In addition, they help relieve stress, aid with stomach and digestive problems and strengthen your immune system.
6. Chamomille Tea
Chamomille tea comes from a flowering plant like a daisy and can reduce menstrual cramps, control your cold and help with sleep.
After a stressful day at work, try out this Relax Already Apple Tea made from chamomille
Source: teavana.com and healthmeup.com
Written on July 25, 2013 at 6:28 pm , by Judith Pena
I’ve always been fascinated by people with a “signature drink.” Not the type of drink that they have named after them, but the type of drink that they order all the time. I’ve always wondered, first, how did they find or decide on this drink? And second, what did their drink of choice say about them? Perhaps one of the reasons I was intrigued by these drinkers and their single cocktail devotion was that I didn’t have a signature drink of my own–that is until I discovered the Negroni.
Written on July 25, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Judith Pena
I drink iced coffee all yearlong, even when there’s snow on the ground. But buying iced coffee on the daily can get expensive, so I’ve taken to making my own coffee–cold brew, to be specific. So what the heck is cold-brew coffee, anyway? Well folks, pay attention, because I’m about to show you the way. (Oh, and since you don’t need electricity for this method, you can thank me the next time the power goes out and you can still get your caffeine fix!)
So what’s the difference?
Cold-brew coffee is made by steeping coarsely ground coffee beans in room temperature or cold (ie. no heat here!) water over a long period of time and straining the liquid to create a concentrate. As no heat is applied, the bitter flavor components of the bean are not released, producing a less astringent and less acidic coffee that some even describe as sweet.
How do you make it?
Written on July 18, 2013 at 3:58 pm , by Judith Pena
At brunch recently, an Italian friend of mine cancelled my normal brunch drink and ordered me a Bicicletta instead. “Trust me,” he said, laying on the Italian accent of course, “you’ll love it.” And he was right. Bitter, sweet, effervescent and not too strong, this vibrantly colored cocktail is a must for brunch or a summer picnic when you wanna mix it up. Get the supersimple 3-ingredient plus garnish recipe below.
The Bicicletta supposedly gets its name from the old Italian men who would wobble and swerve on their “biciclettas” (Italian for “bicycles”) on their way home after having a few too many to drink. Personally, I think it’s best made with a dry Italian white wine, such as pinot grigio, as it balances the bitter components of savory Campari. Play around with the amount of club soda you add too. The goal is to add enough club soda to make the drink light and sparkling, but not so much that you dilute the drink and it’s bright red color.
Please forgive the bluriness of the photo, perhaps I had one too many biciclettas at that point.
Makes 1 drink
2 ounces Campari, an Italian liqueur
2 ounces white wine, preferably Italian
- Combine Campari, white wine and club soda.
- Gently stir to mix–you don’t want to deflate the carbonation.
- Garnish with lemon slice and enjoy.
Written on July 12, 2013 at 10:15 am , by aphillips
Tito’s Handmade Vodka founder and master distiller Bert “Tito” Beveridge (yup, that’s his real last name… clearly he was born for this business) has endured a long road to success with a lot of sips of vodka along the way (he tests every single batch himself)! The native Texan started out as a geophysicist, worked on dynamite-blasting oil reserves, dabbled in sub-surface mapping and analyzing ground water, and even tried out mortgage banking before he found his true calling: vodka distilling. What began as a hobby (he used to make small batches for friends) has become his passion. Today, Tito’s is one of the fastest-selling and fastest-growing micro-distilleries on the market and was just named the exclusive vodka of United Airlines. We sat down with him (over a drink, of course) to find out more:
- If you could spend a weekend cooking with Rachael, what would you make? Asian vegetable stir fry with tofu. Chicken fried venison with cream gravy. Dove breasts sautéed with garlic. Redfish with lemon. Breakfast would be French toast one day and chip beef on toast the next.
- Drink of choice? Titos with sparkling mineral water, a squeeze of lime and a squeeze of orange.
- What cocktail trend are you most excited about right now? Fresh fruit muddled with Titos and seltzer water
- #1 guilty pleasure? Rum raisin ice cream
- Best gift you’ve ever received? Kids
- Best gift you’ve ever given? An Audi
- What would you want your last meal to be? (Calories don’t count!) Deluxe Mexican dinner at blanco cafe in San Antonio. It is a beef taco. A chalupa. Guacamole. 3 cheese enchiladas with beef sauce and onions. Rice and beans. Flour tortillas and a Big Red to drink.
- You have an afternoon completely free to do anything you want — what’s it going to be? Go fishing on a creek.
- What’s your #1 rule to live by? Try hard with a lot of love in your heart.
- What’s your go-to dish if you want to impress someone? Turkey
Visit titosvodka.com for more info.
Written on July 11, 2013 at 1:30 pm , by Judith Pena
Cucumbers are cool…literally! Did you know that cucumbers are about 20 degrees cooler than the air temperature on a warm day? Yup, so put that in your cocktail. No, really–do it! As an unexpected cocktail ingredient favorite, cucumbers lend a light melon flavor and mouthwatering freshness to cocktail creations all year-round. Keep reading below for to see how you can put this crunchy green in your cocktails.
Get the recipes: