Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Maple, Ginger and Bourbon

I had the privilege of attending an amazing dinner party over the holidays where I was among many creative and amazing people (McGruber was there!).   A fabulous night, under the Los Angeles stars, eating food from these guys and drinking drinks made by this guy. (OK, just kidding, I don't have a website for the bartender, but I do have his email if you live in LA and are in need of a kick-ass bar-tender...).  Anyway,  I was so taken by this particular cocktail, I had to get the ins and outs of it.  Let me be clear, I am not a bourbon drinker at all, (although I always wished that I was.  It has this sexy, dusty, smokey, Southern drawl about it).  I'm wary of drinking brown liquor, especially when combined with sugar = headache!!  This drink has serious hangover potential.  Don't say I didn't warn you!
So, here's the gist, equal parts ginger syrup and maple syrup, to two, (or 3), parts bourbon, (get the good stuff, I used Maker's Mark), a squeeze or two of lemon and garnish with a cinnamon stick.  Perfect for a chilly night among friends and by a warm fire, which is exactly how I've been doing it!

Maple, Ginger and Bourbon over Ice

makes 2 drinks

1 - 2 ounces ginger syrup
1 - 2 ounces grade A maple syrup
6 ounces good/best quality bourbon, Makers Mark
juice from 1 lemon
2 cinnamon sticks for garnish
club soda *optional

In a shaker, combine everything but cinnamon sticks and lemon.  Add some ice and shake.
Pour into 2 rocks glasses filled with ice and add squeeze or two of lemon, or more to taste.
Top off with club soda *optional.
Garnish with cinnamon stick. * I've found good prices on cinnamon sticks at World Market!

Might pair nicely with this dessert?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy 2011! Get to Cookin'

Happy 2011!  As we usher in a new year, we are again bombarded with "healthy" diets and new weight loss plans which always seem a bit far fetched and unscientific.  We promise to change the unhealthy habits and poor eating choices that we make which usually only lasts a few agonizing weeks.
I read this article by Mark Bittman in the NYT, and thought it was a perfect way to kick off the new year as he suggests that even though we say we don't have time to cook healthfully, we spend thirty five freaking hours a week in front of the t.v.  No more excuses, America, this is getting ridiculous!  Use your damn kitchen and start cooking some meals at home!

These are Mister Bittman's 3 must-have recipes for a healthy planet and a healthy population.  All can be altered to fit a meat-eaters or a vegan diet.  Happy New Year!

Broccoli Stir - Fry with Chicken (or not) and Mushrooms

Lentils and Rice With or Without Pork

Crunchy Cabbage Salad

Illustration from New York Times, January 2, 2011.