Monday, September 10, 2007

A Consolation Recipe

I have an apology offering for the lameness of the Goo: the recipe I concocted last week for peach-basil sangria, which may or may not be a direct contributor to my addle-brained state-of-mind recently. It's a crisp, refreshing cocktail that makes the overripe last days of summer feel ten degrees cooler.

When I'm cooking, I rely mainly on my senses, eyeballing the ingredients to make sure it's a good ratio, smelling and tasting the food until it's tweaked just the right way. This means I don't do a lot of measuring, which really ticks some people off. I've tried to include some metrics in the recipe, but more than the measurements, you have to be like Toucan Sam and follow your nose- it always knows.

Whatcha Need
  • Ripe (err on the side of overripe for fuller flavor) white peach, thinly sliced
  • Ripe yellow peach, thinly sliced
  • Ripe asian pear, thinly sliced
  • Ripe honeycrisp apple, thinly sliced
  • Big handful of freshly chopped basil- a cup? two?
  • 2/3 cup of raw cane sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  • A few hefty squirts of lime juice- maybe 1/3 cup?
  • Pinch of sea salt (since it's so mild, the contrast makes the sweetness of the fruit pop. If you don't have sea salt, don't bother with the salt though, since other salts tend to dominate the flavor to quickly)
  • Bottle of rosé
  • Gin- at least six shots, more depending on your taste. Bombay Saphhire works the best in sangria whatwith all the floral overtones and whatnot
N.B. I sometimes use Stirrings Simple mojito juice and cut down the sugar amount. It works quite well.

Whatcha Do
  1. Eat one slice of fruit to fortify you through the process.
  2. Make a simple syrup: take half of the remaining slices fruit and put them in a pot with the water (or juice), lime juice, sugar, four shots of gin, sea salt, and about 3/4s of the amount of basil you chopped. Bring the mixture slowly (read: medium low heat) to a boil as you muddle the fruit and basil into the mixture with a wooden spoon. Then turn the heat way down and let the mixture simmer- the longer you let it simmer, the more the flavors work. Make sure to stir frequently; sugar burns the second you leave it alone. I usually let it simmer for about 20 minutes.
  3. Strain the syrup into a bowl or cup and let it cool down for a bit. Your neighbors should be floating on the sumptuous aroma waves wafting out of your kitchen window at this point.
  4. Pour the wine into a pitcher, add a few more squirts of lime juice, the remaining fruit, the simple syrup mixture, gin (I usually add three hefty glugs worth or a six-count; this is why my friends like me) and the remaining chopped basil. Let the whole thing rest in the fridge for a little while so that the flavors settle in.
  5. Serve over ice with slices of fruit in the cups; makes about 4 tall glasses' worth. Your friends will forgive a multitude of hostessing sins, from dust kitties to overbaked nachos - so long as you keep the sangria coming.
  6. Let me know what you think and if you guys want more recipes for Gooey goodness.


Blogger 3pennyjane said...

Yeepers. You couldn't have posted this when I had a kitchen overrun with peaches? This is a recipe that makes friends. Friends who really luvyuman, Imean, Imean, 'slike, y'know?

4:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Definitely more recipes.

6:20 PM  

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