Tag Archives: drink

Watermelon & Cucumber Tonic

A reinterpretation of the familiar gin and tonic, this cocktail includes fresh watermelon and cucumber juices for a refreshing taste. Hendrick’s, my favorite gin, which is a small-batch Scottish gin that’s infused with the flavor of cucumber and rose petals, is ideal for this recipe!

Watermelon & Cucumber Tonics
makes 8

6 cups cubed seeded watermelon, divided
1/4 cup mint leaves, divided
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, divided
1 English cucumber, peeled, sliced, and divided
2 1/2 cups tonic water, chilled
1 1/4 cups gin

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A Light Refreshment

With the heat of summer upon us, there’s not much better than cool, refreshing cocktail to bring the work day to a close.  I’ve been a fan for a while, but still, every time I bring my lips to the glass for the first sip of this delightful beverage, I am, once again, hooked.  Give it a try – I dare you – and 5:00 might just begin to come earlier…

cucumber-and-hendricks

Simply pour a little Hendrick’s in a glass with ice and sliced cucumbers and enjoy!  Add a little tonic if you prefer and to make it even more delightful, a splash of St. Germain.

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In Print: Clips from Food Sections

24guidebasil_6505. – The Chicago Tribune Cool off with Homemade Ice Cream “The only thing homemade ice cream requires is advance planning because freezing is required for the machine’s canister (overnight), chilling is required for the base (a couple of hours), and then the finished ice cream requires a stint in the freezer too (a few hours).”

4. – The Boston Globe Seeking the Best Fried Chicken “Think Southern-fried chicken, and chances are the next words that come to mind are “secret herbs and spices.’’ To me, that’s Southern-fried baloney. Prolonged immersion in very hot grease is not a method that coaxes out bouquet; the only elements likely to survive are garlic and cayenne. But spicing aside, the sine qua non of good fried chicken certainly is the crust, the best being a simply seasoned flour- or cornmeal-based coating delicately but thoroughly welded to the skin in a crisp, delicious synthesis.”

3. – The LA Times Train Chefs Keep Quality on Track “Shaun Murphy was facing a chef’s worst nightmare: a dining room full of guests and nothing to feed them. And running around the corner to the market was absolutely out of the question. Murphy was cooking aboard a train that was stuck between Los Angeles and Chicago. A highly regarded chef, Murphy was in the galley of a private rail car that was delayed for 12 hours after a train up ahead went off the track in Iowa. The passengers had been scheduled to arrive at their destination well before dinner, but Murphy wasn’t about to let them go hungry.”

2. – The NY Times Refreshing by Definition “BASIL Unless you sell your own line of pesto, there’s only so much basil you can use. So why not drink it? A distant cousin of MINT, basil can be put to some of the same uses in cocktails, but with predictably different results. MUDDLE it or just toss it in the shaker and let the ICE do the work (but use a strainer). Basil plays well with fruit, even pineapple.”

1. – The Washington Post Where There’s Smoke, There’s Flavor “Although smoking cigarettes has nearly become anathema in modern society, smoking foods is more in vogue than ever. Smoke, it seems, is like a fifth flavor (or sixth, if you allow for umami), with the ability to transform, contrast with and accentuate the food that has been exposed to it, whether that is salmon, pork, fruit, chili peppers or tea. In gastronomy, smoke is the door to another room, a lively, hazy space that is at once promising and almost limitless, yet also dark and dangerous.”

photo from The NY Times

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In Print: Clips from Food Sections

436940475. – The Boston Globe The Greenest of Them All “Increasingly, owners are trying to reduce this environmental impact, implementing rigorous recycling and composting programs, installing energy- and water-saving devices, relying on local ingredients, and more. The Green Restaurant Association, started in 1990 with the goal of forging an ecologically sustainable restaurant industry, offers an ongoing certification program to help restaurateurs go green.”

4. – The Chicago Tribune Remaking Comfort Foods “Healthful eating and comfort food don’t have to go together like spinach and brownies. It’s just that we’ve become so accustomed to thinking good-for-you dishes can’t be warm, gooey and soul-satisfying.”

3. – The LA Times Bacon Recipes Galore “Bacon has a place at the table morning, noon and night. And venture beyond its natural pairings to the unusual yet sublime — in an apple coffeecake or as a martini garnish.”

2. – The NY Times Let 100 (O.K., 8) Bartending Philosophies Bloom “Ten years ago, cocktail seekers would have been hard-pressed to find a bar that used fresh juice in sour mix (never mind adding microplaned zest), and ordering an Aviation would have earned a cold look instead of a refreshing but potentially lethal mixture of gin, lemon juice and maraschino liqueur.  Today drinkers don’t need to search far to find bartenders who not only squeeze their own citrus, but make their own bitters, have an encyclopedic knowledge of drinks and stock spirits imported, on the sly, in a suitcase.”

1. – The Washington Post Fab Food Gifts: Mix It Up, and Make Your Friends Happy “Homemade food gifts can run the gamut from cutesy to gourmet to just plain good. I took the latter approach when creating my kitchen gifts this year, because it seems a particularly appropriate time to give useful, budget-stretching items.”

photo from The LA Times

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One last summer cocktail!

With Labor Day quickly approaching, it’s time to hurry up and get those summer cocktails out of your system (along with the white shoes and seer-sucker).  While in Vermont a couple of weeks ago,  we had an incredible dinner at The Bearded Frog in Burlington.  I started off with one of their specialty cocktails, A Gin and Tonic with a refreshing twist – cucumbers with the necessary lime!  The result was the perfect drink – refreshing from the tonic and lime all while making me feel like I was drinking a spa healthy drink as a result of the cucumber infusion!

Try it – I promise, it’ G&T heaven!

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In Print: Clips from Food Sections

5. – The Boston Globe We Now Pronounce You Ready To Cook “Everyone who has ever been on the dating circuit knows that a relationship only gets serious when somebody dares to cook dinner. If you follow this logic, then newlyweds truly cross the marital threshold when they engage in those meal preparations that mark everyday life – quick weeknight dinners, an evening entertaining friends, or a cheerful Sunday morning brunch.”

4. – The Chicago Tribune Dips and Chips Enter the 21st Centrury “Today, it’s plain to see that a revolution has been taking place, one that embraces all dunkers and dips. Once described by John F. Mariani (in his 1983 Dictionary of American Food and Drink) as “a condiment, often made with mayonnaise or sour cream, into which one dips any of a variety of vegetables or snacks,” a dip—and its dunkers—is not so easily defined today. The dip-and-chip combo of the 21st Century has evolved, reflecting international culinary influences and a new sophistication and ease.”

3. – The New York Times Blender Drinks are Back “We loved blender drinks in the ’50s, when the piña colada sailed north from San Juan and captured the mainland United States. It was taken up by the tiki bars and restaurants that spread across the country after World War II, inspired by the success of Trader Vic’s in Emeryville, Calif., and Don the Beachcomber in Hollywood. Modern bartenders might embrace the blender if they had been around in those pioneer days.”

2. – The LA TImes Simplicity’s the Secret for Perfect Grilling “In exchange for that simplicity and cooking quality, there are a couple of things you have to think about when cooking with a live fire. The first, of course, is the fire itself. The tendency is to fill the grill with as many coals as will fit. This works well if you’re starting a blacksmith shop, but cooking requires a more deft touch.”

1. – The San Francisco Chronicle The Din of Dining “The clang of dishes, the clink of glasses, the roar of voices and the pulsating music seemed to grow louder as I perused the menu. By the time the server came to our table, I felt the sudden urge to order a side of noise with my fried chicken. But the cacophony would have drowned out my sarcasm. Instead, I pointed to the entree I wanted on my menu.”


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