Drinks, Snacks and Summer!

Sunday cocktail tradition continues with a Lemon, Lavender and Rosemary Martini! Thankfully our summer weather has granted us some lovely cool evenings on the porch with a breeze and what better to accompany that time than a sweet and savory cocktail. I love anything with lemon in it and with the added earthiness of the herbs and just a hint of sweet from the lavender, this drink is summer in a glass.

This makes about two BIG cocktails and you can always adjust for your own needs (we like a strong drink at Chez Hunt). There will be leftover simple syrup which you can use again during the week (I leave it in the fridge) or you can lessen the recipe to have less.

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For the syrup:
1 small sauce pan
¾ water
¾ plain white sugar
About 1 tablespoon each of rough chopped: rosemary, lemon balm (not required but a nice touch) and lavender
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Bring the ingredients to a boil, stirring gently and make sure the sugar and water are incorporated, turn off the heat and let cool in the pan with the herbs. When room temp, strain into a smaller vessel and set aside in the fridge to cool completely.

Save a few springs of rosemary and lavender for garnish

For the drink:
2 chilled martini glasses
1 shaker
6-8 fluid ounces of good quality COLD vodka
Ice cubes for shaking

Combine in the shaker: ice cubes, lemonade, vodka and about ¼ cup of the syprup….SHAKE IT UP and pour into glasses. Garnish with sprigs and SIP!

Here are some other things we have been eating lately…..

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BBQ Naan pizza – inspired by Noble Pig’s recipe (see link below), here is my twist on the flatbread. It’s so easy, looks great and is so quick to prepare. This is a great recipe when you want a hot lunch/dinner but don’t really want to cook.

1 package of Stonefire Naan (2 in a package)
Rotisserie chicken, shredded into small pieces
¼ of a red onion sliced into very thin ribbons
BBQ sauce
Avocado
Shredded cheddar cheese (almost any cheese variety will do but I love a good sharp cheddar)

Dot the flatbread with some BBQ sauce (I have the squeeze bottle version so I just drizzle some on the Naan)

Layer on chicken, a few slices of red onion, cheese and avocado

Place onto squares of tin foil and put in the oven or on the grill (pre-heated) until the cheese melts (careful not to over-cook or burn it!). I placed mine on the left side of my grill (on very low) and had the right side on full blast to have the heat in the grill but not direct connact on my Naan.

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Watermelon and Mint Refreshers (booze optional)
(psss…..this is a great way to use up some extra watermelon leftover from a party)

1 cup of watermelon, cut into chunks then frozen
2 teaspoons of lime
1 pinch of salt
¼ cup of chopped fresh mint
Vodka (optional)
Soda Water

Freeze the watermelon, then put frozen chunks, mint, lime and salt into a small food processor and pulse until smooth (almost like a smoothie)
Add about ¼ cup of the watermelon mixture to a chilled glass with ice and top with soda water (option to add a shot of vodka to drink!)

Options: you can also add in other frozen fruit like cantaloupe, white grapes, melon, and pears (so toss in what’s left of that fruit salad and make it a drink)
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Little dingos love watermelon too…small bites, not too much and no seeds or rind

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A little life update: I haven’t been posting much as life has been a bit hectic.  Work, social commitments, the heat, the gym, a few unforseen financial requirements (aka a fancy new oil tank and some new “historically correct” windows) made these last eight weeks feel like holding onto a runway horse.  I also admit I kind of pushed myself down the “rabbit hole” with doing too many activities which produced itself in a new low of mental/physical exhaustion. I am learning, slowly, that going 100 miles an hour at all times does not always produce a positive result. We tend to take pride in being “so busy” yet the world use to think have leisure time was sign of opulence and status. I am trying to revert back to that time and enjoying those quiet moments and not pushing myself to always be sooooo…busy.  Yes I can still be a very productive human at work and at home, but I will not feel guilty for having some downtime.

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NOBLE PIG: http://noblepig.com/2015/07/avocado-barbecue-chicken/

By Emaly Hunt / @grapesandgarlic on the Instagram / grapesandgarlic.com

 

dg

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