Martini Monday

Martini Monday: Autumn Pear

HappyMartiniMondayLogoHappy Martini Monday!  With the holidays just around the corner, November’s recipe is festive with the colors and flavors of autumn.  It’s the time of year when local markets begin to carry holiday fruits and nuts, and this martini reflects those elements with hints of almonds, pears and cranberries.

I am very much an amateur at this martini making business, but I’m learning for the current novel I’m working on.  I will admit I’m getting better with each recipe and this one is quite lovely.  With winter just around the corner, it’s a perfect cozy cocktail for family gatherings, or just an evening with friends.

Once again, this should go without saying, but I’m going to repeat  it anyway—you need to be of legal drinking age to try this recipe.

Wherever you are, may you have a wonderful and safe holiday season!

Cheers!
Jan

CelticLineSMALL

Autumn Pear Martini Recipe

Ingredients:

Autumn Pear Martini

Autumn Pear Martini

-2 ounces of pear vodka (infusion recipe below)
-2 ounces of cranberry juice
-1 ounce of amaretto liquor

*Cinnamon sugar and pear for garnish

Instructions:

Pour all spirits into an ice-filled shaker.  Shake several times and strain into prepared martini glass.

These martinis can be garnished with sliced pear or cinnamon sugar.  If garnishing with the cinnamon sugar, prepare martini glass by running a sliced lemon around the rim and tapping gently into cinnamon sugar before mixing the martini.  For the cinnamon sugar, mix a tablespoon of cinnamon to a ½ cup of sugar, or to taste.

 

Pear Infused Vodka

There are several wonderful pear-flavored vodkas on the market, but infusions are easy and lend a natural flavor to the vodka.  They just take a little time and prep work.

Pear Infused Vodka: Before and After My pups are always underfoot when I'm doing a photo shoot, and i simple couldn't resist useing the photo with them in it. :)

Pear Infused Vodka: Before and After
(My bulldogs are always underfoot when I’m doing a photo shoot, and I   simply couldn’t resist using the picture  they snuck into.)

For this recipe, I used half a bottle of vodka and two ripe pears for the infusion.  The end results will only be as good as the starting spirits, so use decent vodka.  The container must be air-tight and not plastic.  Glass mason jars work well, but you can find inexpensive sealable glass containers in most kitchen supply stores.  Always sanitize the container beforehand and wash the fruit.  Sanitizing solution is available at any brewing supply store.  Slice pears in segments (about ½ inch) and remove stems and cores. Place sliced pear segments in your sanitized container and pour the vodka over them.  Vodka should cover the fruit.  Keep in a cool dark area for four days.  Using a coffee filter or fine strainer, strain infused vodka back into it original bottle.  The pears will turn the vodka an amber color and increase the amount of liquid.  I’ve been told that the mixture doesn’t need refrigeration, but since the volume of alcohol is decreased by a third (finished photo on the right) I do keep it refrigerated just to be safe and serve within two months.

Martini Monday: Magical Kiss Potion

HappyMartiniMondayLogoHappy October everyone! With Halloween just around the corner, this month’s martini has a fun twist for your gatherings.  If anyone happens to ask, it’s a blueberry lemon drop martini.

For those of you who are wondering why I’m suddenly posting martini recipes, well I’m working on my next novel in a different series.  This one has a contemporary setting. Martinis are on the menu, along with a bit of suspense, a spunky heroine, and of course, a toe-curling hero.  You all know I take research seriously.  🙂

For the next year I will be sharing martini recipes on the first Monday of every month.  October’s recipe is posted at GraveTells. This blog has been awesome to me from the beginning of my Celtic Wolves series, and will also be attending the Coastal Magic Convention in February 2016!

For  my Magical Kiss Potion Martini Recipe, just click on the following link.  There’s also an excerpt of Elen and Cormack’s first kiss.

Magical Kiss Potion Martini Recipe at GraveTells

MagicKissPotion

CelticLineSMALL

The Coastal Magic Convention has become one of my favorite author and reader events.  It’s takes place in Daytona Beach in February!  For more information you can visit their website…

Coastal Magic Convention

CMC2016_beachnook

CelticLineSMALL

As always, I hope you’re reading something just for fun!

Cheers,
Jan

MagicalKissMartini

Martini Monday, Caramel Apple Martini

HappyMartiniMondayLogo

Happy Martini Monday!  September is the time of year for country fairs and apple picking, so I thought I would try an adult version of the classic caramel apple.  I will admit I’m getting pretty good at this martini business, because this one came out incredible.  Nostalgia adds a bit of whimsy to this drink, and who doesn’t love the taste of caramel and apple?

For those of you who may be wondering why I’m suddenly posting martini recipes, the heroine in the novel I’m currently working on owns a martini bar and I’m experimenting with   some unique drinks for her business.  The vanilla tea below is my creation and very worth the extra effort.

As for this current creation, well… Do you remember that first feeling of walking into a country fair, or a carnival?  The Ferris wheel turns against a blue sky, and the scent of funnel cakes and cotton candy fills the air.  Caramel apples line the counters of vendor carts, coated in rainbow colored sprinkles. This is what this drink reminds me of.  It’s the last days of summer in a glass.

Cheers!
Jan

Caramel Apples

Caramel Apples

Caramel Apples and Cotton Candy

Caramel Apples and Cotton Candy

 

CelticLineSMALL

Caramel Apple Martini Recipe

CaramelAppleMartini

Caramel Apple Martini

Ingredients:
2 ounces of green apple flavored vodka
1 ounce of Caramel schnapps (DeKuyper’s Buttershots works great)
1 ounce of bitter apple schnapps (DeKuyper’s Sour Apple Pucker works great)
2 ounces of vanilla tea (recipe below)

Pour into an ice filled shaker.  Shake several times for good luck, and then pour the mixture into a chilled martini glass. If there’s a fair in town be sure to buy a caramel apple and slice for garnish, but sliced green apple works just as well.

Also, and this should go without saying–but I’m going to say it anyway–you must be of legal drinking age to try these, and please drink responsibly!

Vanilla Tea Recipe:
2 pods of fresh vanilla sliced lengthwise. Run a spoon or butter knife down the inside of the pod to gather the seeds and sticky goodness from inside the pod.  This is the best part, so add both the husks and insides to the water.  (Please use fresh vanilla pods.  Extract will give it an odd taste.)
6 cups of water
1/3 cup of sugar

You can adjust sugar to your taste, but I’ve found this is the level that works best for me.  Bring the vanilla, water and sugar to a boil.  Continue on a gentle boil for fifteen minutes.  Turn off heat and let the pods steep until liquid is cooled.  Strain several times until the seeds are no longer in the liquid.  Keep refrigerated.

Martini Monday, Strawberry Shortcake

HapHappyMartiniMondayLogopy Martini Monday!

This month’s martini is strawberry shortcake, a recipe I made on a whim next to the planned strawberry rhubarb. (One never knows what interesting recipes are contrived in my kitchen.)  Well, the strawberry shortcake martini won by two votes–according to discerning friends and family.

For those of you who are wondering why I’m suddenly posting martini recipes, the heroine of my current project is the chef and owner of a restaurant and martini bar, hence the sudden experimentation with original martini recipes. If you couldn’t tell, I’m having fun with this book!

(I will be posting a new recipe on the first Monday of every month.  As always, these recipes are for adults of legal drinking age and should be used responsibly.)

I wanted a summertime martini and the first thing that came to mind was strawberries.  I’m not sure if this is a popular flavor in your area, but here strawberry rhubarb pie and strawberry shortcake are the desserts of summer.  I made two versions of each for this month’s martini recipe, but the strawberry shortcake was the winner, if only by two votes.  Yes, my friends have to deal with me dragging them over for martini testing, although the “dragging” really only consists of a text.  🙂  

CelticLineSMALL

Strawberry Infused Vodka

The first task of this recipe is to make strawberry infused vodka.  From research, I learned to use a glass jar to steep the berries for a few days. I sliced one quart of fresh berries, poured the vodka over them and let the mixture steep for four days at room temperature.  Afterward, I strained the liquid back into the original bottle.  Be sure to use a fine strainer to remove all the strawberry seeds. Strawberry juices added to the liquid by almost a third extra in volume, so the alcohol isn’t quite as potent, but I’m not sure of its actual level.

StrawberryInfusedVodka   StrainedVodka

 

Strawberry Shortcake Martini Recipe

2.5 ounces of strawberry infused vodka
3 ounces of vanilla infused simple sugar
1 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice

Pour into an ice filled shaker.  Shake several times for good luck, and then pour into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with sliced strawberry and enjoy!

StrawberryShortcakeMartini

 

Vanilla Simple Sugar Recipe
2 pods of fresh vanilla sliced lengthwise. Run a spoon or butter knife down the inside of the pod to gather the seeds and sticky goodness from inside the pod.  This is the best part, so add both the husks and insides to the water.  (Please use fresh vanilla pods.  Extract will give it an odd taste.)
6 cups of water
1/3 cup of sugar

This is more like a vanilla tea  than simple sugar, but the sweetness level is perfect with the vanilla pods.  You can adjust sugar to your taste.  Bring the vanilla, water and sugar to a boil.  Continue on a gentle boil for fifteen minutes.  Turn off heat and let the pods steep until liquid is cooled.  Strain several times until the seeds are no longer in the liquid.  Keep refrigerated.

CelticLineSMALL

Until next time, hope you’re enjoying your summer, sharing lots of laughs with friends, and reading something just for fun!
Jan

 

 

 

Martini Monday, Raspberry Chocolate Dream

MartiniMondayLogoI hope everyone is having a wonderful summer so far!   Now that Autumn Moon is complete I’m working on my next novel in a different series.  This one has a contemporary setting. Martinis are on the menu, along with a bit of suspense, a spunky heroine, and of course,  a toe-curling hero.

For the next year I will be sharing martini recipes on the first Monday of every month–because why should  Fridays get all the fun?  Twelve recipes, fully tested by adventurous friends and family members, beginning with  Raspberry Chocolate Dream.

Happy Martini Monday!
Jan

CelticLineSMALL

The inspiration for Raspberry Chocolate Dream:

So, I came up with this recipe by accident when I boiled raspberries for a dessert and they liquefied in the pan. What didn’t work for pastry works like a dream in martinis–hence the name. 🙂 First, you need to splurge on the good stuff–no plastic bottles allowed!  There’s no amount of raspberry sauce that will make these drinks taste good if you don’t.  The price can be  cringe worthy, but average that out with   ordering drinks with friends at your favorite restaurant/bar/lounge and you’ll feel better about the splurge. Also, and this should go without saying–but I’m going to say it anyway–you must be of drinking age in your country to try these!

 

ChocolateRaspberryDreamIngredientsWhat you’ll need:

~ a twelve ounce bag of frozen raspberries
~ 1/4 cup sugar
~ 4 cups of water
~ Chambord (raspberry liquor)
~ Vodka (Grey Goose is decent)
~ Crème de Cacao (I tried using Godiva but it curdled when combined with raspberries)
~ chocolate sauce (Ghirardelli syrup works great)
~ a  shaker filled with ice  and martini glasses

 

raspberrycompoteprep

For the raspberry compote, add the frozen raspberries, sugar and water in a pan and bring to a boil.  Simmer for fifteen minutes until the berries liquefy and the seeds separate.  Cool and strain into a container.  Discard pulp.  I run the raspberry liquid through the strainer a few times just to make sure I’ve removed all the seeds.  Keep refrigerated until you’re ready to make the martinis.

 

ChocolateRaspberryDreamMartini

 

Raspberry Chocolate Dream Martini Recipe:

1. Prep your glasses
Squeeze a  few circles of   chocolate sauce around cooled martini glasses

2. Prep your martini

~ 2 ounces of raspberry compote
~ 1 ounce of vodka
~ 1 ounce of Chambord

Combine in an ice-filled shaker; give it a good shake and strain   into glass.

~ top with a shot of Crème de Cacao

CelticLineSMALL

The next martini recipes I’m testing are strawberry rhubarb and caramel apple, so be sure to stop by the first Monday in August to see which one comes out best!

As always, I hope you’re reading something just for fun!
Jan