Wednesday, January 21, 2015

HUMP DAY HAPPY HOUR

Two weeks ago, I shared my New Year's resolution with you in this post. And since I wouldn't want to let you down, I've been hard at work testing my latest cocktail, a Blackberry Gin and Tonic. While searching for recipes, I was intrigued by the idea of a cocktail shrub. Honestly, I can't say I even knew what it meant before I found this recipe. I guess hipster and mixologist aren't synonymous with Ashley. Ha! With a little assistance from Lady Google, I learned that a shrub is just "a concentrated syrup that combines fruit, sugar, and vinegar, resulting in a sweet and acidic mixture that can be used in a variety of drinks." I've never had much of a green thumb, but this seemed like one "shrub" I could handle. See what I did there? Anywho, I gave the recipe a whirl and enjoyed the fruits of my labor this past weekend. The end result was equal parts tangy and tasty—a great way to welcome the week ahead! 

BLACKBERRY GIN AND TONIC
Recipe from A Thought For Food

SHRUB INGREDIENTS:
1 Cup Blackberries
1 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
3/4 Cup Sugar

*NOTE: The shrub in this cocktail takes a week to prepare.

FOR THE GIN AND TONIC:
1.5 oz Gin
.75 oz Blackberry Shrub
Tonic Water
Blackberries


DIRECTIONS:
  1. Toss blackberries in a bowl with sugar. Let mixture sit at room temperature for one hour.
  2. Mash blackberries with large spoon. Let mixture sit at room temperature for one hour.
  3. Mash the fruit mixture again. Let it sit at room temperature for 24 hours.
  4. Add vinegar, stir, and let sit, covered, for at least one week. Make sure to give mixture a good stir every day.
  5. After a week, strain the fruit mixture and save the liquid in a covered jar.
  6. For the G+T, pour gin into a glass, followed by the shrub. Add a handful of ice and top with tonic. Garnish with blackberries.

The shrub-making process is a fun one with oodles of fruity possibilities. 
If gin is your spirit of choice, give this recipe a shot. You won't be disappointed.
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