Obedient Ingredients

A place to put cooking ideas to the test.


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Lemon Verbena Gimlet Cocktail

It’s 95 degrees out right now.

Real feel is something like 101.

Humidity is pretty awful.

Time for a gin drink. A GIN drink! With fresh herbs and citrus juice.

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Let’s get right to it:

Lemon Verbena (or any herb, really) simple syrup:

  • For the simple syrup
    • Equal parts sugar and water, plus several leaves (no stem) of herb of choice. I used lemon verbena leaves.
    • Add all ingredients to sauce pan over low heat, stir until sugar dissolves. Let cool, then strain into jar, and put in fridge. Lasts up to a week or so.
  • A gimlet is:

Gin + lime juice + sugar (or simple syrup)

For this recipe I did:

  • 2 oz gin
  • 2 oz lime (this is very citrusy, which was great for the heat!)
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • lemon verbena leaves and mint leaves as a garnish

Shake vigorously with ice, double strain, garnish.

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The herbs for garnish are not just for looks. When you stick your nose in the glass, your nose is overwhelmed with a lot of aroma. The smell is a big part of the cocktail experience. I used a toothpick because I plucked the leaves from the stem.

Enjoy, and stay cool. Drink lots of water!*

 

*A great thing I heard regarding drinking water right when you wake up: Drink a glass of water right when you wake up. Why? It’s been 6-8 hours of no drinking fluids. Wouldn’t you be thirsty otherwise? It’s a great, easy way to wake up.


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Pickle Brine in Cocktails? Taste Test #1

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This is what I imagine cocktail creation looks like.

Especially when it comes to a new, unique ingredient that seems hard to incorporate.

Pickle brine.

Yup. And now it’s being canned for the general public to drink.

To many this may seem odd and quaint. Even if you love pickles you may raise an eyebrow at brine marketed as a beverage. As for me, I already know the power of drinking vinegar in the form of shrubs (sugar + fruit + vinegar) by itself or in a cocktail, so drinking brine by itself does not seem far off.

It helps to have a friend who is in the canning business, because when this local pickle company approached my friend to can their brine, I got excited because that means I get to try it before it’s on the market.

For the first time ever, I feel hip as s***!

But can this tasty, savory and salty drink find its way into a cocktail recipe? That’s what I’m really curious about today.

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Vegetable Infused Pimm’s Cocktail

All it takes is one random comment.

I read about cocktails often. I had a bottle of Pimm’s and was figuring out what to do with it. A Pimm’s Cup is just fine (Pimm’s, ginger beer/ale, with cucumbers and mint), but I wanted to do something different with it.

While reading about variations on the Pimm’s Cup, in the comment section of this particular post, I came across someone who said the following:

“So the best Pimms Cup I’ve ever had was in New Orleans at this super old bar that I can’t remember the name of. The bartender had been working there for like 15 years and we talked Pimms. She infused her Pimms with cucumber, celery and carrots for 4 weeks and mashed the veggies in then double strained the liquor. She used a good ginger ale, and if you were nice she would throw in a rosemary infused gin topper.

Without a doubt one of the best drinks I’ve ever had. Just wanted to throw in another idea of what you can do.” [Emphases added]

I knew I needed to try this! I couldn’t find any other recipe similar to this description on Google.

Below is this unnamed cocktail that I just made, and it is indeed amazing, like this commenter said. This is not my idea, but this my recipe.

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Shrubs: Strawberries and Plums

Shrubs are vinegar, sugar and fruit. Shrubs are delicious and easy to make.

They are delicious, they quench your thirst (the Gatoraid of the 1800s) and they add a great twist in cocktails. They are a great addition to hot summer parties and a non-alcoholic alternative.

Shrubs are more tart/acidic because of the vinegar, and that tends to scare people away. But it is surprisingly refreshing when added with the right things.

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Add any shrub to soda water and lots of ice with a bit of fresh lime or lemon juice, and you’ll see this drink disappear during your summer parties.

I highly recommend this book with tons of recipes for shrubs and shrub-based drinks: Shrubs – An Old Fashioned Drink for Modern Times by Michael Dietsch.

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Creative Cocktail Challenge: Apples

First experiment in a long time! Happy almost-autumn, my favorite time of year.

I’ve been very busy getting curious and excited about cocktail making recently. This post will be the first of many, I hope, to showcase some of the things I’ve learned.

I’m participating in a group that comes together to test their skills in mixology by focusing on a certain theme. This challenge’s theme is apples. That means incorporating apples in any part of your drink.

In my excitement to dive into cocktail testing, I may have gone overboard. The following showcases my notes of exploration and eventually a drink I came up with that uses apples!

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