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Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

Can we all do a collective sigh of relief that it’s Friday and there’s time for creating the perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic?  My week started off with snow.  That’s right – snow, again, in Oregon, in March.  I usually spend one or two days each month around the Oregon capital in Salem, and I’ve been waiting and waiting for the daffodils around the capital mall to open.  I’d been so hopeful that they’d be blooming already, but no – they look as discouraged by the weather as I’ve been.  Instead, I had to tromp through the slush and snow to get to the office I work at when I’m in Salem, getting my feet wet and my shoes muddy.  Not to mention, it was also snowing in Portland as I was getting ready to leave on Monday morning.  Giant flakes of snow kept attacking me and the dog when I went out with her before I left.  Not fun.

It’s no wonder I’ve been increasingly leaning toward drinking white wine and making fruity, happy, summer cocktails.  I figure if I spend enough time pretending it’s summer, it will get here faster, right?  Yeah – so far, no luck.  I guess in the meantime, I will stay inside where it’s warm and dry, curl up on the couch and snuggle with Daisy (our dog).  I’ll also make up a Spanish G&T or two.

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

The great thing about creating a perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic (as compared to a regular gin and tonic), is that you can use all sorts of pretty aromatics in it.  I like the variety rather than having to dig around in the fridge each time to see if I have a stray lime hanging around.  For this particular G&T, I used a combination of satsuma mandarin orange peel, cardamom seed pods, juniper seed pods, and whole peppercorns.  I also through in a dash of grapefruit bitters, which are my new most favorite item in my liquor cabinet.  You can mix up the aromatics: fresh herbs are wonderful in a Spanish G&T – I love throwing in fresh rosemary, but lemon thyme works well, too, as would regular thyme, various types of mint, and so on.  You can also use citrus peel or citrus segments.  I’ve used blood orange ice cubes before, as well.  Really, this is the most versatile cocktail in my repertoire of cocktails.

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

So, make one of these up with what you have on hand and enjoy the warm weather (if you are living in a state where there is warm weather right now) or enjoy watching it rain or snow.

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

 

Creating the Perfect Spanish Gin and Tonic

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces gin
  • tonic water
  • 2 drops grapefruit bitters
  • Various aromatics

Instructions

  1. Combine the gin, grapefruit, and aromatics in a glass. Top with tonic water. Enjoy!
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Kiwi Berry Gin and Tonic

Kiwi Berry Gin and Tonic

Several weeks ago, I noticed that the local markets were selling kiwi berries, which just look like miniaturized kiwi fruit.  Usually, I’m quick to try a new fruit, but I’d purchased some gooseberries early in the season and then let them linger in the fridge until they were unusable.  I was hesitant to jump on the kiwi berry bandwagon until I knew what I could actually do with them.

But if you linger too long…I finally bought one little pint of fruit and fell instantly in love.  It turns out that kiwi berries can be eaten as is – skin and all.  They really are just little kiwis, with a slightly sweeter taste.  They were so lovely, I went back to the store the next day to get more (because they also looked very photogenic, but I ate/used all of them before I got a good photo for the blog) and they were all gone.  I searched around town and couldn’t find any more.

Fortunately, I’d split about half the berries and infused them in some gin, which means I do get to enjoy the kiwi berry season for a little longer than they are available.  If you can’t find kiwi berries in your market, you can definitely use regular kiwis for this recipe.  The kiwi infuses a slightly sweet tart tone to the gin.

If you live in a mild climate, you can grow your own kiwi berries.  I think I see a garden project coming on for next year.  In the meantime, I’m going to sit back and enjoy a kiwi berry infused gin and tonic.

infusions

The front picture is the kiwi berry infused gin.  The back picture is fig infused brandy – I’m sure you’ll be seeing a cocktail inspired by this in October.  I love this photo, as it seems a bit mad-scientist-about-to-go-awry.

kiwi-berry-gin-and-tonic

Kiwi Berry Gin and Tonic
Serves 1

2 ounces kiwi berry infused gin (recipe below)
1/2 lime
tonic water
1 kiwi to garnish (or a few kiwi berries)

Pour the lime juice and infused gin over ice cubes in a cocktail glass.  Add the tonic water and stir.  Garnish with kiwi slices or kiwi berries. Enjoy!

Kiwi Berry Infused Gin
5 to 7 kiwi berries, sliced in half (or 1 kiwi, peeled and sliced)
Gin to cover the berries or kiwi slices

In a pint jar or similar container with a lid, cover the kiwi berries or kiwi with gin.  Refrigerate for at least a week.  When the flavor is to your liking, strain the fruit out using cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer.  Refrigerate and enjoy!

 

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