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The Reis' Pieces cocktail.
Because when in doubt this Halloween, make a candy cocktail. Thanks to bartender Jim Reis at Santa Fe's Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi restaurant, this Reese's-inspired cocktail will be a hit long after the trick-or-treaters go home and the candy has been eaten.
- 1 1/2 Ounce Godiva Chocolate Vodka
- 1/2 Ounce Frangelico
- 2 Ounces half-and-half
- 2 Teaspoons peanut brittle (ground to a powder)
Shake with ice, strain into martini glass with ground Reese's Pieces on the rim.
The Picon Punch is a 19th-century cocktail featuring a unique liqueur called Amer Picon, plus grenadine, brandy and sparkling water. The liqueur dates back to 1837, when it was created by Gaëtan Picon as a medicinal tonic. While enlisted in the French army and stationed in Algeria, he collected local herbs including quinine, cinchona and gentian to make the original 78-proof Amer Picon liqueur.
Picon went on to open a distillery in Marseille, France, and his namesake spirit eventually found its way to Bakersfield, California, where it was mixed regularly into drinks like the Picon Punch for the local Basque population. Today, the Picon Punch is a common serve among the vibrant Basque community in Reno.
Despite its lengthy history and current niche popularity, the Picon Punch is rarely served in the U.S. today as it was originally intended. That’s because Amer Picon is no longer commercially available in the country, so the cocktail is typically made with other liqueurs that mirror the original.
To make their Picon Punch, the innovative bar team at San Francisco’s 15 Romolo substitute a blend of Italian amari and liqueurs to fill in for the Amer Picon’s intense herbal character, using two parts Ramazzotti, two parts dry curaçao and one part gentian liqueur. The combination approximates Amer Picon’s unique flavor profile of bittersweet orange, gentian and dry quinine. Their version also calls for homemade grenadine for a better, richer flavor than the bright-red bottles you find on store shelves.
How To Make Ginger Syrup
Ginger simple syrup is easy to make using just plain ol’ sugar and water. The flavor that water, sugar, and fresh ginger create when they simmer together for a bit is amazing. This entire process takes no more than 15 minutes and leaves you with plenty of ginger syrup for all your cocktail and home chef extraordinaire needs.
Here’s all you’ll need:
- about 3 ‘finger-sized’ pieces of ginger (100 grams)
- 1 cup of white or cane sugar
- 1 cup of water
All you need to do is prepare the ginger to extract all the flavor, aroma, and goodness then simmer this in the sugar and water. You can slice or dice the ginger by hand with a knife or you can send it for a whirl in your food processor- the latter is our go-to method!
Additionally you can change the flavor of your ginger syrup by using a deeply flavored sugar like brown sugar, coconut sugar, or even honey. These will have much stronger, bolder flavors than a white or cane sugar.
Also, the syrup will settle a bit in the fridge so give it a shake or two before using to ensure all the syrup is mixed together.
To peel or not to peel the ginger…
Personal preference! This is completely up to you as we tested this recipe both ways and found a minimal difference between the two. The ginger syrup we didn’t peel was a bit darker in color and had some teeny tiny flecks of debris in it.
The flavor between the two was the same– we couldn’t tell the difference in a blind taste test.
Now, the ginger we used was fresh and wasn’t laced with dirt, as ginger grows underground sometimes it has a substantial amount of dirt on it. If the ginger you purchased is very dirty I’d recommend peeling it.
We did slice off the leathery end pieces and removed the ‘armpit’ sections or the deep V joint where a nodule is growing as these are hiding places for dirt and debris.
If you intend to peel the ginger, the easiest way is to cut off any irregular knobs and growths then scrape the papery skin with a spoon back and forth to remove the skin. This works much better than a vegetable peeler.
Ginger Simple Syrup Uses
When we think of any simple syrup, cocktails are first to come to mind as this is the most common way simple syrup is used. We’ll dive into a few ginger syrup cocktail recipes in just a bit… However, there are plenty of other ginger syrup uses just waiting to come to life in your kitchen! Let’s dish.
- To make ginger tea – add 1-2 tablespoons to a mug of hot water, maybe with a slice of lemon
- Use on pancakes and waffles instead of maple syrup
- Add to lemonade or soda water for a flavor boost
- Add to stir-fry, ramen, or curry dishes
- Add to iced coffee and smoothies
- Use to make flavored icing and frosting
- Add to rice or quinoa while cooking
- Use to flavor homemade kombucha
- Use as a glaze or marinade for protein
We’re big fans of flavored simple syrups and creating new ways to use them around the house to add big flavor to our meals. If you think of any other ways, please let us know and we’ll update this post!
Ginger Syrup Cocktails
Ok the fun part! On to how to make cocktails with ginger syrup and a couple of our favorites! The following cocktails are classics with simple variations to include ginger syrup in place of other syrups or sweeteners while also adding to the overall profile of the drink with ginger flavor!
Our cocktail forecast is warm, spicy, and loaded with fresh ginger flavor!
#1 MOSCOW MULE:
If you find yourself out of ginger beer but have a craving for a moscow mule, you can use ginger syrup and soda water! Here’s the drill:
- 2 ounces vodka
- 1 ounce ginger syrup
- 4 ounces soda water
- Squeeze of fresh lime
Play around with the levels a bit to find your preference. If you like more ginger heat, add more ginger syrup! Or try it with a Mexican mule!
#2 LEMON DROP:
It’s got a lovely ginger aroma and zippy lemon flavor. I’m not huge on flavored martinis, but this one tops the list! My husband gets the glory for this wonderful creation. We were brainstorming flavors and cocktails that would benefit from ginger simple syrup. This one does indeed!
Add to a shaker with ice and shake this jewel up! Pour through a strainer and serve in a sugar rimmed glass.
#3 WHISKEY SMASH:
The whiskey smash is similar to a mint julep, but with added citrus. Quite frankly, the only way we make ours is with ginger simple syrup! Because nothing goes better with whiskey than ginger!
- 2 ounces whiskey
- 5-7 mint leaves
- .5 ounce ginger simple syrup
- 1/4 lemon
Muddle the mint, lemon, and syrup together. Pour into an old fashioned glass and add whiskey, top with ice and garnish with fresh mint! Cheers
#4 BOURBON SOUR:
Hello bourbon our old friend, we’ve found a new way to sip you again! We love us a good whiskey sour adding lemon and ginger to it gives a really unique taste– here’s how to take it for a spin!
Shake this puppy up and strain over rocks in an old fashioned glass. Garnish with an orange slice, peel, or candied orange wheel!
Hello, you world-famous 3 ingredient cocktail, you! This is a gin and ginger ale cocktail that you can easily add ginger simple syrup to. Ginger ale is sweet but doesn’t have much ginger heat… adding simple syrup will change that right up!
Serve on the rocks. Alternatively, if you don’t have ginger ale you can use ginger simple syrup and soda water to recreate this refreshing cocktail!
#6 ROSE SANGRIA:
Three cheers for sangria season! This rose sangria recipe is a fun and funky twist on the stagnant classic, showing off the flavors of gin and sangria. Swap the gin for whiskey or light rum.
- 1 bottle chilled rose
- 1/3 cup gin (or sub bourbon or light rum)
- 1/4 cup ginger simple syrup
- 1 cup strawberries, quartered
- 1 sumo mandarin, segmented or 3-4 cuties
- 1 cup raspberries
Add everything to a serving pitcher and place it in the refrigerator to chill for 3-4 hours. Serve in a wine glass with mint or candied orange slices as a garnish! Salud to summer! Watch out– this stuff is dangerously good!
BONUS: Make Candied Ginger
What about all the ginger pieces you strained out of the syrup? Friends, these don’t need to go to waste– this ginger can live a second life as homemade candied ginger! YES!
Candied ginger is incredibly easy to make if you’ve made this ginger syrup you are halfway there. As you have already strained the ginger syrup, you’d simply need to simmer the ginger again in sugar water then strain and toss with sugar to coat.
Candied ginger is a killer cocktail garnish and tastes divine mixed into treats as it pairs fabulously with chocolate, vanilla, nuts, and fruits. If you make this ginger syrup as listed, you’ll get about 1.5 cups of candied ginger pieces.
To turn those leftover ginger bits into delicious candied ginger:
- Add the strained ginger back into a pot with 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup sugar.
- Heat over medium-low heat until simmering, which won’t take long, then reduce heat and gently simmer for 10 minutes. Ensure this is a low simmer and not a full boil.
- Strain the ginger through a fine sieve, using a spoon to press the ginger against the sieve to squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
- Add to a bowl with 1/3 cup sugar and toss to coat all pieces in sugar crystals.
- Spread into a thin layer on a large plate or baking sheet and leave out until fully dry
We’ve made ginger syrup on many occasions, but only as we were testing this recipe did I take the plunge and candy the ginger. HELLOOO who am I? ‘Candying’ something sounds complicated, like you’ll need thermometers, special spatulas, and maybe protective eye gear. Not at all.
Guys/Girls. Candied ginger is EASY and it is incredibly flavorful! As it was drying on the counter my hubs and I were walking by and nibbling on it all day.
1. Royale Mix Cocktail Shaker Set
- 11 pieces bar tools
- Leak-proof cocktail shaker
- Made of rustproof stainless steel
- Dishwasher safe bar tools
- Magnetic gift box
What Customers Have To Say
A customer commented that this cocktail shaker set is lovely, and each piece is well-made with lots of character. She furthered that she likes the absence of metal in the organizer as it may be harder to clean and polish. The bar tools also fit well in the holes, which is a nice feature. Plus, she used the shaker a few times without any leaks or spills.
On the other hand, another customer bought this cocktail shaker set as a Christmas gift for his family, and they all loved it. He said that the rustic stand is sturdy and looks beautiful in their kitchen. Since they are new to the world of mixed drinks, they are very impressed with the bar tools’ quality.
Why We Think It’s Great
The Royale Mix cocktail shaker set features a rustic style wooden storage with antique bronze finish handles that can turn your simple kitchen or bar counter more elegant. The bar tools are made of 304 and 430 stainless steel making them durable enough to withstand the pressure of mixing cocktails.
Who Should Buy It
Give this cocktail shaker set a try if you are a newbie bartender who wants to have all the necessary bar tools to mix any beverage type.
I’ve gotten this question from readers saying that their drink turned out such a dark purple that it almost looked black. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, because it should taste the same and still looks pretty creepy!
The color of your drink may vary depending on the brand of raspberry liquor used, as well as your food coloring. Different brands of these products may have different shades, and may create different purples, from reddish to indigo, to almost black.
You could also play around with adding more of the mixers (soda and lime juice) to lighten things up a bit.
More of our favorite Halloween recipes:
Grab a free printable copy of our Maleficent Halloween Cocktail Recipe:
If you like this recipe, please rate it! We’d also love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
|2 Bryan® Juicy Jumbos® Franks||1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese|
|2 hot dog buns, split||stone-ground mustard|
|1 cup mashed potatoes (instant or homemade)||paprika|
1. Prepare mashed potatoes. Stir cheese into potatoes until melted and fully incorporated.
2. Slit each hot dog open (being careful to keep it in one piece) and add mustard along length of dog. Stuff dog with cheese mashed potatoes.
3. On a foil-lined baking sheet, place hot dogs under broiler for 5-8 minutes until heated through and potatoes are lightly browned.
How to Make a Dirty Martini
When the craving for salt and olive brine hits, dirtier is better.
- Combine the gin, vermouth, and olive juice in a mixing tin with ice. Stir well.
- Strain into a chilled martini glass.
- Garnish with as many olives as you'd like on a toothpick.
If you want more olive juice, add more olive juice. There's no reason to set limitations on yourself.
The Dirty Martini used to be the punching bag of cocktails. You can see why. A classic Martini is an orchestral composition, demanding finely tuned finesse from its maker. A Dirty Martini is "Smoke on the Water" in Guitar Hero by comparison. You might've gotten an eyeroll at the bar for ordering it. There might've been whisperings about "wasting good vermouth." And sure, it's not like the Dirty Martini has suddenly become the golden child of drinks. But there is a certain amount of new respect for a person who knows what they're about, and if what they're about is a Dirty Martini, so be it.
A Dirty Martini doesn't just take guts to order, but to drink, as well. Boldly briny and salty as the sea, it's disgustingly good, with that cloudy swirl of olive juice attacking your taste buds. But when you want a Dirty Martini, you want a Dirty Martini. It's like craving a can of salt and vinegar Pringles. Nothing will do until you've got them. If that craving has just walloped you, here's how to make a Dirty Martini. You can use vodka instead of gin if you prefer. Just don't skimp on the olives.
A Little Background
The Dirty Martini enjoys a rich history of being utterly despised by bartenders. But among its champions was FDR, who famously&mdashand sloppily&mdashmade his own cocktails almost every day, and who is credited for popularizing this briny Martini offshoot. (Our 32nd president also had the honor of ending Prohibition in 1933.) Punch pegs the rise of the Dirty Martini to post-WWII America, although it was invented before, and says FDR's version called for two parts gin, one part vermouth, and a teaspoon of olive brine. According to some reports, FDR served a dry Martini to Joseph Stalin at the Tehran Conference in 1943, which Stalin unenthusiastically reviewed as "cold on the stomach." Perhaps he'd have preferred it dirty.
These days, bartenders are coming around to the Dirty Martini if drinkers insist upon ordering it, it might as well be good. As such, craft variations and ingredients have sprung up in recent years, like olive bitters, caperberries for garnish, and brine specially bottled for use in cocktails. The Dirty Martini is cleaning up its act, so to speak.
If You Like This, Try These
Too dirty for you? A classic gin Martini punches up the gin and holds the juice. You can garnish it with three olives, or a lemon twist for a hint of citrus, or cocktail onions (that's called a Gibson). And then you get into the Martini variations. There's a Vesper, like James Bond drank, with a perplexing recipe that calls for gin, vodka, and Lillet. (Don't shake!) A Tuxedo has gin, sherry, and orange bitters. And there's always the option of swapping your gin for vodka.
However, if you're just here for the salt and the brine, then it is high time you learned the art of the pickleback shot and the pickle juice cocktail.
4. Egg Drop Soup
Here's Clara's recipe for Egg Drop Soup: Peel and dice a potato and an onion. Slowly brown them in a pot with oil until soft, then add bay leaves and salt and pepper. Once browned, add half a pot of water to the mix to make broth. Simmer on the stove and add more salt and pepper to taste until the potatoes are cooked. While boiling, crack two eggs into the pot and stir until scrambled. Add two more eggs into the soup, so the yolk hardens. Add cheese to finish it off. Once completed, serve the Egg Drop Soup over toast.
WHAT IS MEXICAN SHRIMP COCKTAIL
If you’ve never had this appetizer before, it’s high time you treated yourself. It’s where shrimp cocktail meets Bloody Mary, and it is one heck of an introduction.
In your typical Mexican Shrimp Cocktail recipe, the shrimp is cooked via boiling. However, with this recipe, we are going to both cut back on time and up the flavor by pan-searing the shrimp.
Pan-seared shrimp takes a bare minimum of 5 minutes to cook over medium-high heat, meaning less cook time and no more waiting on watched pots to boil. A step anyone would gladly omit.
Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cocktail
Happy Thursday Slow Roasters! Welcome to Ladies Night here at The Slow Roasted Italian. Tonight I am sharing a very special cocktail created by our very own mixologist Chad (also my fabulous other half).
After a long hard day what sounds amazing to you? The most heavenly food combination ever: peanut butter and chocolate. Do you remember that commercial from the 80's? A jar of peanut butter and a giant chocolate candy bar sticking out. "You stuck your chocolate in my peanut butter. " THAT could be my heaven.
My favorite candy ever are the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Easter Eggs. I could eat them everyday and be completely happy. Peanut butter cups are my happy food! Not just off the store shelf though, my favorite is to eat them chilled. Ohhhhh purely divine.
Keeping this in mind, Chad developed my happy cocktail. Being completely thoughtful of his cocktail creation he is using real peanut butter, he adds Kahlua to bring out the chocolate flavor (as I add coffee to chocolate in baking). This is not your standard peanut butter martini. This is like a peanut butter cup in a glass. It is absolutely incredible. So, kick off your shoes, grab a spot on your favorite comfy chair and pour yourself a Peanut Butter Cup Delight Cocktail. Virtually guaranteed to chase your day away.
Peanut Butter Cup Delight Cocktail
1 1/2 ounces Creme de Cacao
1 ounce Kahlua (coffee liqueur)
1 ounce Frangelico (hazelnut liqueur)
1/2 ounce Bacardi white rum
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
3 ounces of cream or milk
chocolate syrup for garnish
handful of ice
In a martini shaker combine the alcohols and the peanut butter, stir until it the peanut butter is dissolved into the alcohols. Add cream and ice to the peanut butter mixture and shake to chill and combine.
Prepare a martini glass by pouring a little chocolate in the bottom, decorate as you wish. Pour Peanut Butter Cup Delight Cocktail through strainer and serve.
oh holy smokes. Who on earth would have thought of a PB martini? I half laughed when you said that this was not the average PB martini. I actually googled it thinking that there couldn't possible be such a thing already. Ha. Apparently, there is and Chad has just kicked it up about a dozen notches.
By the way, I LOVE the photo. It is the perfect example of my REAL ladies night. Kids are down and I'm ready to truly relax in my favorite place. HOME!