Friday, September 21, 2007

Farmer’s Market Cocktails

Believe it or not, completely independent of this week’s episode of Top Chef, I also went shopping at the Union Square Greenmarket. Adam and I didn’t even fire up the DVR to watch Top Chef until we had already consumed many of the cocktails listed below. My goal was not a chicken dinner, but fresh cocktails, natch! Using ingredients local, seasonal and unusual, I did a trial run of what my day in San Francisco will be like next week. Below are the literal fruits of my labor.

Apple Pie-tini

Sweet juicy tart Wine Sap apples
(a bit of a cheat since I will probably have none in SF)
Dash of lemon juice
¼ of a vanilla bean
agave syrup
Caramel sugar rim.
*that was Adam’s favorite part

Muddle the heck out of the chopped apple with the vanilla bean, lemon, cinnamon and agave. Add cracked ice, vodka and calavados. Pour into cocktail glass, with caramel rim*. You might not need the lemon, I just always liked my mom’s lemony apple pie and this tasted just like it, minus her fabulous crust..hmm…maybe THAT should be the rim?

*to make the rim, heat some natural cane sugar in a small saucepan over a low heat. When caramelized, let cool slightly and dip non-chilled glass in the pan to coat the rim. Chilling the glass before hand may cause the glass to break.

The Concord Fizz

Bunch of Concord Grapes
Cane Sugar
Lemon Verbena
Dash of lemon bitters
Club Soda or sparking wine (pref from NY State)

Muddle the grapes, sugar and bitters. Add ice, vodka and shake vigorously. Pour into cocktail glass and top with wine or soda. Add a sprig of lemon verbena speared with a grape

This one reminded me of summers at my grandma and grandpa’s farm. I love the grapey taste on Concords and the verbena added and very pleasant herby flavor. The color is gorgeous! This was Adam’s favorite of the night.

The Black and Blue

Lemon Basil
Thai Basil
Maraschino Liquor
Honey to taste

Muddle together the two berries and the two basils (I went a little muddle mad last night) with the Maraschino. Add ice and vodka, shake and strain though a fine mesh strainer into a cocktail glass (you want avoid those blackberry seeds, as we learned on Top Chef this season). Add honey to taste if its too tart, but I like my drinks tart. Garnish with a sprig from one of the basils, I used the Thai because it is purple like the drink. Again, gorgeous color with this drink!

The Green Monster

Ogen melon - the “internets” say this melon is from Israel, perfect for Yon Kippur I guess!
Lemon Thyme – pick the leaves off
Lemon Basil - pick the leaves off
St Germain Elderflower liquor

Blend all ingredients in a blender and you get a frothy, tasty treat. The fresh smoothie quality makes it seems like its good for you! The color is bright green, however.

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