Amaretto Sour with Prosecco

I haven’t had much amaretto – none in drinks, only in the buttercream frosting of an almond-raspberry cake (recipe next week!). I was pleasantly surprised by this cocktail. With the Prosecco, it isn’t as I imagine a straight-up Amaretto Sour to be.

The original recipe reflects enough for one drink. The quantities in parentheses reflect enough for 4-5 servings, which would use up the whole bottle of Prosecco.

Amaretto Sour with Prosecco

Adapted from Giada de Laurentiis

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbs. simple syrup (or 1/2 c.)
  • 3/4 c. Prosecco (or 1 whole bottle, 750 ml)
  • 2 Tbs. amaretto (or 1/2 c.)
  • 1 lemon (2)
  • 1 lime (for rimming)
  • Ice cubes
  • 1/4 c. sugar (for rimming)

Simple syrup is made by combining 1 part water and 1 part sugar and boiling until sugar is dissolved. To make enough for 1/2 c. simple syrup, use 3/4 c. of each water and sugar. Set aside to cool.

Prepare the Glasses: Zest lemon and lime. Combine with sugar in a flat dish. In another small bowl, juice the lemon and set aside. Cut the lemon into wedges and rub around the rims of the glasses. Lightly press rim into sugar, fill with ice, and set aside.

Make the Drink: In a pitcher, combine Prosecco, amaretto, splash of lemon juice (use all of it if making the 4 servings), and simple syrup. Stir & serve.

Garnish with a slice of lemon and/or lime, if desired.

Pomegranate Cosmos

A twist on a classic cocktail, this Pomegranate Cosmo recipe makes a pitcher for easy entertaining.

One of my favorite things about visiting my parents is how Mom and I always end up with a drink in hand. Lately it’s been French Martinis, but this weekend, we tried a new recipe from the cookbook I gave her earlier this month (a thank you for hours of painting and yard work at our house). These cosmos were wonderfully sweet. Make sure you throw them in the shaker before serving – we didn’t and they were seriously strong. Enjoy!

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Pomegranate Cosmos

Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 6 Drinks
Author Liz

Ingredients

  • 2 c. good quality vodka I like Grey Goose
  • 1 c. Grand Marnier Contreau or other orange liquor
  • 1 c. cranberry juice
  • 1/2 c. pomegranate juice
  • 1/2 c. fresh lime juice from about 3 limes
  • lime peels for garnish

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients except lime peals in a pitcher and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  2. To serve, fill a shaker with ice and add cosmo mixture. Shake until chilled and serve, garnished with a lime peel.

 

This recipe was adapted from Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics

Product Review: Boxed Wines

A couple years ago, I had read an article in Fine Cooking on boxed wines. Back then, I wasn’t a big wine drinker, but I knew that boxed wine didn’t have a great reputation. I decided to try it anyway – Fine Cooking had never steered me wrong; I didn’t drink or cook with wine often enough so wanted something that would keep for a while; and you can’t beat the price (most are under $20 for the equivalent of 4 regular 750 ml bottles).

I’ve only tried one of boxed wines recommended in FC and in a later issue of Food Network Magazine, not because I don’t want to, but because I haven’t been able to find all the brands or I forgot which ones were recommended. However, I wanted to share this list with you anyway.

If you’ve tried any of these, please leave a comment – both myself and future readers will thank you for your input! =)

Recommended White Wines:

Banrock Station Chardonnay, from Australia

Black Box Chardonnay, from Napa Valley

I have tried the chardonnay, pinot grigio, and shiraz and have enjoyed them all, although the pinot grigio is my favorite, with a nice light flavor.

DTour Chardonnay

Wine Block Chardonnay

Angel Juice Pinot Grigio

Also tried Bota Box Pinot Grigio (Dec. 2009) – it’s a sweeter pinot but still very good.

Recommended Red Wines:

Hardys Stamp of Australia Merlot

Delicator Shiraz, from California

Black Box Cabernet Sauvignon, from Paso Robles

I have tried the chardonnay, pinot grigio, and shiraz and have enjoyed them all, so I would recommend giving the cabernet sauvigon a shot (sadly shiraz is the only red wine I drink!)

Wine Block Cabernet Sauvignon

Banrock Station Merlot, from Australia

Boho Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon

Pinot Evil

Oct. 2010 Update: Since wring this, I have also tried various wines from Bota Box and Fish Eye Wine. Would recommend both.

Sources: Fine Cooking No. 79 (July 2006, p. 34-35)

Food Network Magazine (Nov/Dec 2008)

Photos compliments of Black Box and the Block Wines.

Cardamom White Hot Cocoa

I saw a recipe for a Cardamon-Clove White Cocoa in a new cookbook I was given, Williams Sonoma’s Cooking for Friends (p. 235).  I have only had cardamom once, in a cranberry pear tart, and really enjoyed the flavoring and wanted to try it out again.

This recipe was inspired by that in the WS cookbook, but has been simplified so that it could be a quick afternoon snack on a cold day. It’s got a great, light flavor of the cardamon and white chocolate. Enjoy!

Cardamom White Hot Cocoa

Serves 1

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz. good quality white chocolate, chopped
  • 1 c. whole milk
  • a heaping 1/8 tsp. ground cardamom, plus some for sprinkling

In a small saucepan, heat milk and cardamon until hot and almost simmering. Remove from heat. Add white chocolate  and whisk until chocolate has melted.

Pour into a mug.  Serve hot with a sprinkle of cardamon on top.