It’s the first of the month and Daisy’s here with your monthly holiday announcements! Here she is enjoying her stick on one of the last few days of summer in the backyard. September is another busy month for our “national” holidays. Of course there’s Labor Day, and Back-To-School things going on, which also means college football starts up again (finally!!!). There’s also the Mexican Day of Independence (16th), and Rosh Hashanah (28th @ sundown) and Talk-Like-A-Pirate Day (19th). Plus, Daisy turns 2 on the 29th!
4 National Macadamia Nut Day
7 National Beer Lover’s Day
8 National Date-Nut Bread Day
11 National Hot Cross Bun Day
13 National Peanut Day
15 National Creme de Menthe Day
16 National Cinnamon-Raisin Bread Day
17 National Apple Dumpling Day
19 National Butterscotch Pudding Day
20 National Punch Day
21 National Pecan Cookie Day
26 National Pancake Day (maybe)
28 National Strawberry Cream Pie Day
2011 also marks the 10 year anniversary of 9/11. I know that this is not a holiday, but I feel that you can’t talk about a calendar of events without mentioning this day. I thought it was important to address and provide just a couple of informational links for folks. National Geographic has done some good specials about that day from different perspectives, including a special interview with President Bush about his personal experiences as the terrorist attacks unfolded. Also Yahoo! News has posted some different profiles and personal stories on how 9/11 has changed our lives as a nation. You should also visit the national memorial site to see how the memorial and museum are taking shape. It is my hope that on this day, we can put aside what separates us and remember what brings us together.
Take care everyone.
Peter Venkman, Camilla Parker Bowles, and a Tic-Tac. Sounds like the punchline to a bad joke. It could be, but it’s not. This is round 2 of my experimenting with my liquor cabinet and some sparkling wine. By this time in the “trials”, I am starting to get tipsy, so the names of these drinks might be a little weird, but I swear they made sense at the time. Now these names are not original, so hopefully they won’t cause any troubles. I’m not making any money off these things, so I guess it should be okay.
- 5 oz. sparkling wine
- 1 oz. Midori
Pour the Midori into a flute. Top off with the sparkling or champers. Now this one isn’t all that difficult to explain how we got to this name. Originally, I was going to call it a Romulan Ale (and yes I’m a big Star Trek nerd). Problem was that Romulan Ale is blue (if you follow any of the Trekkie lore). There is another Star Trek drink that is green called Aldebaran Whiskey, but that didn’t seem to fit at all. So what’s the next thing that popped into my head — Ghostbusters! The color is definitely that of Slimer, but I couldn’t call it Slime, so Peter Venkman seemed like the next logical choice.
- 5 oz. sparkling wine
- 1 oz. raspberry liquor
- dash of bitters
There was all that buzz about the royal wedding, I thought to myself that maybe I should make something that reflected all the hub-bub. Plus there was all that rioting in London, I think over an increase in fees for students and they attacked the car that was carrying Prince Charles and Camilla. Personally I don’t get the big deal over the hike in fees. Maybe it’s because tuition in this country is redonk — I gots $50,000 in student loans after 2 years of school. But I digress. . . the recipe is simple enough, but I added a dash of bitters. . . because I think Camilla has a dash of bitters herself.
- 4 oz. sparkling wine
- 1 oz. mint syrup
- 1 drop peppermint oil
This recipe packs a wallop. All because of the oil. I recommend closing your eyes when you drink this one. Or try it with your eyes open, then you’ll know what I mean.
I hosted a wine tasting recently with a focus on whites and sparkling wines. So I thought it might be nice to see what recipes are out there for drinks that use sparkling wines (champagne, cava, prosecco, spumante, etc. . . ) as a base. Probably most everyone knows about mimosas and bellinis. But I am looking for something a little bit different from even a sparkling sangria (which will probably be my fall back).
Now my booze cabinet isn’t the most well-stocked, but I do have a couple of mixers that I could use, plus there are some things that I have already stocked in the refrigerator. So here’s what I have:
Mixers, liqueurs, syrups, etc: Midori, raspberry liqueur, cranberry mix, sour apple mix, Angostura bitters, rhubarb syrup, mint syrup, Apple Pie liqueur (luv this stuff. it really does taste like boozy apple pie!), and sugar cubes.
Booze: Appleton VX, Appleton 12-year-old, Pisco, Cachaca (actually two types), Bison Grass vodka, Apple Jack, Yukon Jack, Bulleit Rye, and Woodford’s Reserve.
I am not using my good Appleton rum (If you are ever lucky enough to try some 30-year-old Appleton, by all means get it. Exquisite stuff! Too bad the oldest available in Michigan is the 12-year-old.), the vodka, or my bourbon. No sense in wasting those on something that may or may not work. Plus, no sense in using a bottle of Krug in making champagne cocktails. I am using prosecco from Cupcake Vineyards. Not a bad wine, especially for the price — about $8!
So for this first post I did find some recipes for a couple of traditional cocktails. I apologize for the picture; the cocktails looked a little ominous for some reason. One of them is just a Classic Champagne Cocktail. I guess it’s been around forever. The other one is called Nelson’s Blood. Now if you don’t know the story behind the name, it’s not a pretty one, but more on that later. . .
- 1 sugar cube
- 5 oz. champagne
On a plate, place the sugar cube and splash on a couple of dashes of the bitters in order to soak the cube. Now transfer the cube to a champagne flute and top off with the champagne or sparkling wine. The sugar cube has lots of nucleation points for the sparkling so this will be extra bubbly (think about sodas and Mentos, but not as violent. . . if you don’t know what I’m taking about, click on this).
For the Nelson’s Blood:
- 1 oz. Tawny Port
- 5 oz. champagne
In a champagne flute, pour in your Port. Now top it off with the champagne. I do confess though — the pic does not have port in it, but some of the Appleton VX instead. Although most recipes I found just have the port and sparkling in it, there are some which have rum. These are more complex and have better ties to the provenance of the drink. So here’s a cultural nugget and a little bit of history. . .
Picture it — Trafalgar, 1805. . . The British fleet has just scored another victory against the rival French, but the victory would cost Admiral Horatio Nelson his life. Admiral Nelson was a war hero beloved all over England and a burial at sea would just not sit well with folks back at home. The problem was that getting him home could take possibly months. So to keep his body, er. . . fresh. . . it was preserved in a casket of brandy where it was essentially pickled.
It has been reported that since he was so beloved by the people and admired by his crew, some of the sailors aboard Nelson’s ship secretly stole a sip of the pickling brandy to hopefully take in some of his qualities. So this has given life to numerous concoctions paying homage to him. Check out this one which has brandy (to symbolize his “preserves”), tawny port (to symbolize his spilt blood), rum (because he was a sailor), and blood orange juice (since he died just off the coast of Spain). Tasty!
Daisy says, “Happy August everyone!” If you thought that August is a slow month for national holidays, you’d be wrong. Not only is it National Catfish month, but this country celebrates a whole bunch of things ranging from raspberries to mustard to toasted marshmallows (I just found out that it is also National Peach Month, too). So grab a root beer float and a bag of trail mix cuz it’s August! Here is what we have to look forward this month:
3 National Ice Cream Soda Day (or June 20th)
4 National Chocolate Chip Day (or May 15th)
5 International Beer Day (just found this out!)
6 National Mustard Day (check out the Mustard Museum!)
7 National Raspberries ‘n Cream Day
8 National Frozen Custard Day
11 National Raspberry Bombe Day
15 National Lemon Meringue Pie Day
17 National Vanilla Custard Day
18 National Ice Cream Pie Day
19 National Soft Ice Cream Day
20 National Chocolate Pecan Pie Day
22 National Pecan Torte Day
24 National Peach Pie Day
26 National Cherry Popsicle Day
27 National Pots de Creme Day
31 National Trail Mix Day
Happy July everybody! Lots of stuff going on in July, much like every month. Of course, there’s the 4th of July for us in the States, but there’s also Canada Day on the 1st (it’s like the 4th of July. . . . but Canadian!). And there’s Bastille Day on the 14th. Guess lots of people went independent this month. I think it’s because of the heat.
There’s lots going on in the world of food, too. Month-long celebrations include: National Baked Bean Month, National Culinary Arts Month, National Ice Cream Month, National Hot Dog Month, National Picnic Month, and National July is for Blueberries Month!
Here are some days of interest:
1 National Gingersnap Day
4 National Barbeque Day
5 National Apple Turnover Day
6 National Fried Chicken Day
7 National Strawberry Sundae Day, National Macaroni Day
9 National Sugar Cookie Day
10 National Pina Colada Day
11 National Blueberry Muffin Day
12 National Pecan Pie Day
17 National Peach Ice Cream Day
20 National Ice Cream Day
21 National Creme Brulee Day
22 National Penuche Day
23 National Vanilla Ice Cream Day
25 National Hot Fudge Sundae Day
26 National Bagelfest
28 National Milk Chocolate Day, National Hamburger Day
29 National Lasagna Day
30 National Cheesecake Day
31 National Raspberry Cake Day
That’s lots of “national holidays”! As always, I will try to keep these in mind when trying to post stuff on the blog, but I really don’t have any experience working with penuche 🙂
Happy June everyone! It’s a lovely day here in SEMI, especially since it was mid-nineties hot here for the past couple of days. Just wanted to give everyone a little heads up on what we can celebrate this month.
This year, Father’s Day and Juneteenth are both on the 19th. But culinarily speaking, June is: National Candy Month (here’s a nice nutritional link from Kansas State University’s Dining Services), National Dairy Month, National Fresh Fruit and Veggies Month, National Papaya Month (which is also in September for some reason), and National Iced Tea Month to just name a few. Here are some days of interest:
1 Hazelnut cake day
2 Rocky Road day
3 Chocolate Macaroon day
7 Chocolate Ice Cream day
9 Strawberry Rhubarb Pie day
12 Peanut Butter Cookie day
14 Strawberry Shortcake day
22 Chocolate Eclair day
26 Chocolate Pudding day
I will try to keep these in mind for this month’s postings. I still have to post some things for National Hamburger Month and National Salad Month which was last month. Maybe I’ll save them for next year.