Drinks

Caipirinha Limeade

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I was looking around for another nice summery drink and I stumbled upon this recipe on Martha’s website (hopefully we all know which Martha I’m talking about).  What I was looking for was a recipe that could help me use up my cachaca that wasn’t just a caipirinha.  In the regular caipirinha recipe, you just muddle the lime in some sugar and pour in the booze.  This recipe is still close, but it does amp up the lime.

Now for those who may not know, cachaca is a liquor that is made from sugar cane.  It is different from rum in that it is made directly from the juice, whereas rum is usually made from molasses.

For some reason or another, I thought that this recipe would make like a gallon of the limeade.  Granted I did read the recipe and somehow I figured out 5 1/2 cups of liquid would be more than enough to fill my pitcher.  Maybe I’ll just put in lots of ice.  I could double up the recipe, but juicing another 16 limes is too much of a task right now!

My next mission is to find several recipes that can use up my Pisco!

Here’s what you need:

  • 4 limes, cut into 8 wedges each
  • 2 c. plus 2 T. superfine sugar
  • 2 c. fresh lime juice, strained
  • 1 1/2 c. cachaca

Muddle the limes and the sugar in a pitcher or container with a wooden spoon.  Add the lime juice and mix to dissolve the sugar.  Add the cachaca and stir.  According to Martha, you can keep this in the refrigerator up to three days.  For the leftovers, I strained out the limes and plan on keep it in the fridge until it’s gone.  I’m sure it will be fine, but I’m not 100% sure how the acid from the lime juice will alter the flavor of the cachaca over time.

Michigan Wines in Food & Wine

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Michigan: In Defense of B-List Wine Country | Food & Wine.

Happy June everyone!  I’ve been out of commission for a couple of weeks cuz my computer had the flu (stupid spy ware, & thanx to Jeremy with a “y” for fixing my laptop).  But I came across this and I thought I’d share this great article about Michigan’s Wine Country.  Not too shabs to get a right up in Food & Wine magazine!  Much in the same way that California wines proved that great wine doesn’t have to be made in France, Michigan wines show that great American wines don’t need to be made in California.  I actually made it up to some of the wineries that they mention in the article like L. Mawby and Black Star Farms.  Hope to make it up to the Old Mission soon and check out some of those wineries.

This is an aside, but if you want to learn more about the whole uprising of the California wines against the European elite, check out the movie Bottleshock.  Sure, you can learn about it in books and stuff, but you know what I like about the movie? — no reading!!!  It stars Alan Rickman, who most people will recognize as Professor Snape of Harry Potter fame. . . or the bad guy from the first Die Hard movie.  Bill Pullman’s in it, too, plus the new Captain Kirk himself, Chris Pine.

Rhubarb Sodas and Rhubarb Juleps

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I got the inspiration for this from the blog Coconut & Lime.  There was a post with a recipe for a Rhubarb Soda which sounded so simple and so good.  It was one of those “How-can-this-fail?” kind of things.  Now most likely, I will be trying this later today.  #1 — it sounds delicioso.  #2 — there is fresh rhubarb in the house (hopefully there will be some leftover from a rhubarb upside-down cake which will also be happening later today).  Plus it’s a perfect accompaniment to a nice outdoor BBQ (after all, it is National BBQ Month).

But since we just had the Kentucky Derby. . . was it the Kentucky Derby?. . . it was the one with the hats and the Mint Juleps.  Anyhoo, I thought to myself, “Hey, what about a Rhubarb Julep?”  Now aside from the rhubarb part, my recipe strays from the traditional julep in that I add a splash of club soda to give the drink some fizz and to help balance it out.  Too often I’ve had mint juleps that have been either too sweet or too boozy (which is weird cuz I do drink bourbon straight).  The club soda helps round everything out without just watering the drink down.  So you really could think of this as a Rhubarb Soda with some bourbon in it.

So what can I tell you about rhubarb?  I actually don’t know a lot, but one website (The Rhubarb Compendium) has a whole gaggle of info.  Its roots can be traced back to ancient China with records dating back to almost 5000 years ago, give or take a couple of centuries.  It was used for its medicinal purposes, primarily as a, um, cleanser.  Today we pretty much consider it a pie plant.  But here is a nice way of using rhubarb without having to make a pie.

Here’s what you need for the soda:

  • 4 stalks rhubarb (chopped)
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 c. water
  • club soda
  • ice

1.  Combine rhubarb, sugar, and water into a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to low until the sugar dissolves.  Cook for about 10 minutes to reduce.  Run through a strainer, pressing the rhubarb through to get all the syrup.

2.  In a glass of ice, pour about 1 T. of the syrup (or however much you want).  Top off with club soda and stir.

Here’s what you need for the julep:

  • 1 part prepared rhubarb syrup
  • 2 parts bourbon
  • crushed ice
  • tonic water or club soda

Place ice in a glass.  Pour about 1 oz. of the syrup over the ice.  Add the bourbon.  Top off with tonic water and stir.