"Perhaps the most impressive of all the cookbook blogs are the three devoted to the 2004 edition of Gourmet magazine's "The Gourmet Cookbook" -- all 5¼ pounds and 1,300-odd recipes of it. Befitting this culinary Everest, all three writers are overachievers in their professional lives."

--Lee Gomes, The Wall Street Journal, May 28, 2008
"I should have told you before how much I've been enjoying reading your thoughts. You seem like such a great cook."

--Ruth Reichl, Editor-in-Chief of Gourmet Magazine, June 8 2008, comment on "Chocolate Velvet Ice Cream".

Saturday, September 5, 2009

From Gourmet Today: Cosmopolitans and Gin Rickeys!

You had to know it would only be a matter of days before I explored the Drinks chapter of the new cookbook! And before I embark upon this post I just want to make clear that it is NOT my ambition to add Gourmet Today to my cook-through blogging quest. Good lord. I MIGHT do the three subjects that aren't in the original book...grilling, vegetarian dishes, and drinks...but that's it. Well, I might do some of the cookies. And cakes. But that really is where I will be drawing the line.

Really. And don't say, Famous Last Words.


Being a cocktail enthusiast I had a hard time settling on which drink recipe I would try first. Something in the gin dept.? A champagne drink, perhaps? Punch for 50...don't need that right at the moment! Finally I just shut my eyes, flipped through the chapter, and pointed...and landed on Fizzy Sour Cherry Lemonade, a vodka drink that involves fresh or frozen sour cherries, which are not to be found right now. So I went to the recipe above, and the winner was...Cosmopolitans! Hooray!

Thursday also being CSF day (Community Supported Fishery) I invited our friends Elizabeth and Mark over for dinner to help us eat the fish and try out the Cosmos, and they were more than happy to say yes--impromptu dinner party! Hooray!

The notes for this recipe say that their version uses regular vodka rather than lemon-flavored (thank god, I think that stuff smells like cleaning fluid) and replaces lime juice w/ Rose's. Here's my mis en place...

Just so you know, I never use booze that's more than 80 proof, because anything more just knocks me on my keister. And I would like you to admire those lemon twists! Those of you who have witnessed even some of my many, many incarnations will not be surprised to hear that at one point I was a bartender, though that was a long time ago. Before Cosmos were invented in the mid-90's, so that should give you some idea.

Hello, cocktail shaker that I hardly ever use! Hello martini glasses which seem so appropriate now that we're finally watching Mad Men! Add ice, 1/4 cup vodka (THANK YOU whoever made the decision to translate ounces into cup/spoon measurements!!!!) 2 tbsp triple sec, 2 tbsp cran juice, 1 tbsp Rose's...shake shake shake shake shake shake shake, and.....

Isn't that pretty? Tasted great too! It's worth noting that as I was pouring I was saying, that's it? That's two drinks worth? If you are a habitué of bars where martini glasses are filled almost to the brim, now is the time to tell you are probably drinking two drinks worth of booze per glass. Super-sizing strikes again!

I'll confess to slurping two of those down before moving to wine halfway through dinner and I had a partner in Elizabeth--the guys declined Cosmo #2, finding it a touch too sweet for them. And the next time I try these, I might sub out the Rose's for regular lime juice, just for the sake of experimentation.


Whenever Mark and Elizabeth go away and I take care of their cats, Elizabeth thanks me with a bottle of Bombay gin. So in return for having the privilege of cuddling two kittens last weekend, I got high-end gin...what a great deal! Mark and Elizabeth, go away any time!

So last night I asked Don if he wanted to try one of the gin recipes and although Classic Martinis were a strong pull, Gin Rickeys won out because neither of us had had them before.
This one was pretty simple--gin, lime juice and soda or seltzer. Again, the cocktail shaker! I love that thing! The only sad part of this drink-making experience is that I opened a small bottle of club soda and finished off the drink--only to realize belatedly that it was flat. Phooey! It must have been opened and closed, or it was really really really old. Probably the first one.

So I dumped a little out and poured in some Poland lime-flavored seltzer, which my husband consumes like crazy. I felt like I was cheating a little, but what are you going to do?

This is a really refreshing drink, and if you're one of those folks who would rather not taste the booze, just have the effects creep up on you, this is one of those. You feel the gin more in your stomach than taste it going down.

Is it weird to be so enthusiastic about drink recipes? I AM mindful that booze is a drug (legal, but still a drug), and with a 16 yr. old son we are certainly talking on a regular basis about the All Things in Moderation philosophy. But...I suppose the same thing could be said of food--not that it's a drug, but that it's best enjoyed with moderation. I guess what it all comes down to is how you approach it! Gosh, I could get all philosophical here but I think I'll save that for another day and instead I'll just say have a happy (and safe) Labor Day Weekend! Those of you who are actually laboring, we'll drink one for you. ;-)


Eve said...

those sound great! I say Melissa, it has been awhile since I have seen you... perhaps we should get together for a drink...

Georgia said...

I like lime rickey and raspberry rickey and lime+raspberry rickey so sure I would like gin rickey.