I know we are still a month away from the winter solstice but the time just seems right to share my Winter Solstice Sunset Martini. The days are definitely getting shorter. I’ve been leaving work in the dark and looking forward to getting home where it’s warm and cozy.
We’re also coming up quickly on Thanksgiving, which is the perfect holiday to celebrate by mixing up a Winter Solstice Sunset Martini. One of the great things about this cocktail is that it uses homemade grenadine syrup, which is so easy to make! Pomegranates are in abundance at the grocery store this time of year. I usually buy two or three and then freeze the seeds to use in cocktails and other recipes throughout the winter. Ok – mostly I just use the seeds in cocktails. I recently discovered how incredibly easy it is to get pomegranate juice out of the seeds. Simply put the seeds of one pomegranate into a quart sized freezer bag, seal, and use a rolling pin to squeeze out all the juice. Strain -and there you go – pomegranate juice! From there, it’s easy enough to add a tablespoon of sugar and heat the pomegranate juice and sugar in a small saucepan until the sugar is dissolved. Cool and use in your favorite cocktail (like this Winter Solstice Sunset Martini).
If you don’t use that much grenadine syrup in a weekend or week, you can freeze it in an ice cube tray and thaw out the cubes on an as needed basis. I find this an easier approach than leaving a little jar of grenadine syrup in the fridge for weeks at a time (mostly because I tend to forget that it’s there).
This cocktail also takes advantage of the great citrus seasonal abundance. You can use orange juice or mandarin orange juice for this – or any variation of citrus you can imagine. This would be great with Meyer lemons or blood oranges. Add some vodka, garnish with some pomegranate seeds and enjoy!
- 2 ounces vodka
- 1 ounce grenadine syrup
- Juice from one Mandarin orange
- Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake. Strain into a martini glass and serve. Enjoy!