After picking eight heaping quarts of beautiful strawberries, I had to try a couple of new strawberry cocktails. I must say that it is difficult to make a strawberry cocktail that I would prefer to my favorite Strawberry-Basil Martini and (close second) The Union Square Strawberry Cocktail. Thankfully, we had plenty of strawberries and beautiful evenings to be able to enjoy all of them! 🙂
Both of these cocktails are incredibly simple and quick to prepare. The first is a Strawberry Gin & Tonic- perfect because one of my favorite summer cocktails is a classic gin and tonic. The recipe is from hometoheather.com. The second is a Spicy Strawberry Margarita. My husband made it as a celebratory cocktail on my birthday. ❤ He garnished the rim of the glass with a mixture of coarse salt and chile powder. The recipe was adapted from vinepair.com, contributed by Natalie Migliarini. Tasty and refreshing.
Strawberry Gin & Tonic
Yield: 1 cocktail
1 shot gin
1 wedge lime
tonic water, to fill
1 mashed strawberry
lime wedge or slice, or strawberry, for garnish
Use a highball glass and fill about ¼ full with ice.
Pour the gin over the ice.
Add your mashed berry, squeeze the lime wedge and fill with tonic water.
Garnish with lime or strawberry and serve.
Spicy Strawberry Margarita:
Yield: 1 cocktail
1.5 ounces tequila
1 ounce of lime juice
1/2 serrano or jalapeño chile, seeded (if desired), chopped or sliced into rings
3 strawberries, chopped
1/2 ounce agave nectar
salt and/or Tajín or chile powder, for the rim
1 cup ice
Rim a rocks glass with salt and/or Tajín or chile powder.
Chop peppers and strawberries and add all ingredients into shaker, shaking to chill and combine.
Pour chilled mixture, including the ice, into rocks glass.
This festive seasonal cocktail was absolutely fabulous. My husband and I enjoyed it prior to our quiet Thanksgiving feast this year.
This recipe was adapted from Jamie Oliver via francoiselaprune.com. I poached thin slices of pear so that I could use them as a garnish. I may poach even larger slices next time. We preferred it with a little bit less alcohol so I noted a range in the recipe below.
The delicious pear syrup can be made in advance, making this perfect for Thanksgiving or a party. We used the leftover syrup to make more cocktails! 😉 It could also be drizzled over ice cream.
Yield: Makes one drink (plus additional Vanilla Pear Syrup)
For the Vanilla Pear Syrup: (makes enough syrup for approximately 10 drinks)
1 Bartlett pear, cut in half or quartered, cored, & cut into thin slices
200 g (7.1 ounces, 1 cup) granulated sugar
200 ml (7 ounces, scant 1 cup) water
1/2 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
For the Cocktail:
30ml (1 ounce, 2 T) Vanilla Pear Syrup
30ml (1 ounce, 2 T) freshly squeezed lemon juice
44 to 50ml (1.5 to 1.75 ounces) vodka
poached pear slices, for garnish
Add the pear slices, sugar, water, vanilla seeds with vanilla bean pod to a small saucepan. Simmer on low heat for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Let the poaching liquid infuse and cool down for another 30 minutes.
Strain through a fine wire mesh strainer, reserving the poached pear slices for garnish. Keep pear syrup in a jar in the refrigerator; it will keep for 5 days.
Combine the lemon juice, vodka and 30ml of the vanilla pear syrup into a cocktail shaker. Shake well and strain into a cocktail glass with ice.
Garnish with a thin pear slice (or two).
Note: This cocktail was also wonderful with Meyer lemon juice. (I used the juice of my very first lemon from my Meyer lemon tree!) 🙂
This simple sparkling drink is a very light and refreshing end of summer cocktail. It can easily be diluted with club soda or seltzer, to taste.
The recipe was adapted from drinkoftheweek.com. I used a white nectarine and lemon seltzer instead of club soda. The original recipe also suggests using plums, peaches, cherries, or apricots instead of nectarines.
Yield: One drink
1 1/2 oz vodka
1 oz honey syrup (half honey, half warm water)(I used Italian Melata di Bosca honey)
1/2 oz lemon juice
1/2 nectarine, sliced, plus more for garnish
club soda or lemon seltzer
fresh mint, for garnish, optional
Muddle the nectarine slices in the honey syrup.
Add the vodka and lemon juice and stir.
Top with ice and club soda or seltzer.
Garnish with nectarine slices and/or mint, as desired.
I am a major fan of this pretty pink cocktail. It was very light, refreshing, and minimally sweet. Puréed watermelon is the only source of sweetness. Perfect.
This recipe was adapted from 3-Ingredient Cocktails by Robert Simonson, via The New York Times. I did not strain the puréed watermelon and omitted the jalapeño slices. We tried it with both the cayenne and salt on the rim, and salt alone. Both were delicious. 😉
The original recipe recommends to taste and add more watermelon juice if your margarita is too boozy, and extra lime juice or even a pinch of salt if it’s too sweet.
Yield: 2 drinks
For the (optional) Salted Rim:
1tablespoon coarse salt or fine sea salt
1teaspoon Tajín or 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne (optional)
For the Cocktail:
ice, as needed
6ounces fresh watermelon juice (from about 1 1/2 cups chopped seedless watermelon)(I used cubes from a mini watermelon)
2ounces tequila, preferably blanco
2ounces fresh lime juice (from 1 to 2 large limes), rinds reserved (I used 1 1/2 limes)
2 to 3thinly sliced jalapeño rounds, optional
small slices of watermelon, for garnish, optional
Prepare the salted rim, if using: In a small shallow bowl or plate, combine the sea salt and Tajín or cayenne. Set aside.
Blend the watermelon in a Vitamix or blender; strain if desired. (I left it puréed.)
In a shaker filled with ice, combine the watermelon juice, tequila, Cointreau, lime juice and jalapeño (if using). Shake to combine. (Note: The watermelon flavor shines brighter without the Cointreau, but the liqueur takes the drink into more traditional margarita territory. If you’d like to compare, first try the mixture without, the liqueur, then add 1 ounce of it per serving.)
Using one of the squeezed lime halves, run it along the rim of two margarita or rocks glasses, then dip the rims into the salt mixture.
Fill the glasses with ice, then strain the margaritas into the glasses. Garnish with additional jalapeño slices and/or watermelon slices. Enjoy immediately.