Monday, April 18, 2011

Spirits - April 2011

Diva:  Ashley

Drinks:  Erin
Dirty Martini

Approx 4 oz Vodka or Gin

Approx ¼ oz Dry Vermouth
Approx ⅛ oz olive brine

3 green olives
small wedge of lemon 

Into a cocktail shaker, pour the Vodka/Gin, Dry Vermouth and olive brine.  
Add ice.  Shake well.  Rub the rim of the martini glass with the wedge of lemon.
 Strain and pour contents of cocktail shaker into a martini glass. 
Drop the olives into the martini before serving.

Cosmopolitan Cocktail
2 oz vodka

1 oz triple sec

½ oz Rose's lime juice or fresh lime juice

1 oz cranberry juice (I also brought pomegranate juice)

Shake vodka, triple sec, lime and cranberry juice vigorously in a shaker with ice. Strain into a martini glass, garnish with a lime wedge on the rim, and serve.

Appetizer: Aven
Whiskey Cheese Ball

1 shallot, quartered
6 ounces white chedder cheese, cubed (I used Cahill's Whiskey Chedder)
4 ounces Gorgonzola, crumbled
4 ounces cream cheese, cubed

¼ c butter, cubed

2 T whiskey

1 tsp worcestershire sauce
½ c pecans, chopped fine

In food processor, process shallot until finely chopped, add cheddar and pulse until cheese is crumbly.  Add all remaining ingredients except pecans and process until smooth and fully mixed.
Refrigerate for at least one hour then shape into a ball and roll in chopped pecans.  Chill overnight for flavors to blend, serve at room temperature.

(Adapted from the KitchenAid food processor instruction manual)

Brandied Chutney

2 cups dried apricots, quartered

2 c blackberries, frozen or fresh
½ c raisins

¼ c crystallized ginger, sliced thin
1 c shallot, chopped

½ lemon, thinly sliced and quartered

2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
1 ½ c brown sugar

1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp crushed red pepper

½ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground clove

½ tsp allspice
½ c brandy
½ apple cider vinegar

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan and simmer over low heat until thick, about 45 minutes. 

(Adapted from Culinary Crafting by Doris McFerran Townsend)

Soup:  Mariah
Roasted Red Pepper Soup

6 red bell peppers
2 cloves Garlic (roasted)
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, whole
1 T olive oil
½ c Tequila
½ tsp chili powder
½ tsp cayenne pepper or to taste
¾ c sour cream
1 T tequila
salt to taste
2 c water

Roast the bell peppers. Place on a baking sheet. Place under a broiler and turn occasionally until charred and black on all sides.  Put in a paper bag to cool.  Now the peppers should be easy to peel. Remove peel and all seeds. Set aside.

In a small bowl mix sour cream and the juice of two limes set aside until serving time.

Set heavy saucepan over medium-high heat add olive oil, add chopped onion and salt cook until lightly browned. Add ½ cup of tequila, chili powder and cayenne pepper. Reduce heat, simmer partially covered for a few minutes. Add roasted garlic and peeled bell peppers.  Puree with stick blender until smooth. Whisk in sour cream. Adjust seasoning with salt. Stir in 1 tbsp of Tequila.  Add water to adjust consistency.

Serve with a wedge of lime and a dollop of sour cream.

Salad:  Colleen
Avocado Mango Salad with Tequila Citrus Dressing

Dressing (makes almost 2 cups of dressing):

zest of 1 lime

zest of 1 small orange

juice of ~1.5 limes
juice of ~3/4 an orange

4 T balsamic vinegar

4 T Tequila
just under 1 c of olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp salt

1 tsp chipotle tabasco
fresh ground pepper


mixed greens

avocado, sliced
fresh mango, sliced

dried mango, cut in pieces

Build salad, dress and serve!

(Dressing adapted from

Side Dish:  Sara
Spicy Drunken Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts, removed from stalk
Mezzetta roasted red peppers (about 4 large pieces, chopped)
½ red onion, chopped
1 c Spanish red wine
3 tsp agave nectar (I used honey)
½ tsp paprika
½ tsp sea salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper

Combine all of the ingredients except for the Brussels sprouts and bring o a boil.  Lower heat to simmer until the onions soften substantially. Place each sprout face down into the bubbling wine mixture and let simmer together, uncovered, until the sprouts soften and wine mixture reduces to a syrupy glaze.


Entree:  Lovina

Dessert:  Ashley

Rum Raisin Ice Cream

1 c (packed) raisins
⅔ cup dark rum
7 large egg yolks
1 c sugar
3 c milk (do not use low-fat or nonfat)
1 ½ c whipping cream

Combine raisins and rum in small bowl. Cover; let stand at room temperature 24-36 hours.

Whisk egg yolks and sugar in large bowl until blended. Bring milk and whipping cream to boil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Gradually whisk into yolk mixture. Return mixture to saucepan; stir over medium-low heat until custard thickens, about 15 minutes (do not boil). Strain custard into bowl.  Refrigerate until cold.

Transfer custard to ice cream maker and process according to manufacturer's instructions. Add raisins and rum that has not been absorbed by the raisins in the last 5 minutes of churning. Freeze ice cream in covered container until firm, about 4 hours.

Serve with a dollop of homemade whipped cream

(Adapted from Bon Appetit December 1997)

Lottery:  Tamara

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