Drinks, Something fruity

Plum & apple cordial


I made this by mistake but it’s good some I’m sharing it. I was stewing some plums and apples but added too much water so I simple strained off most of the juice from the fruit through a sieve and and bottled it. Leaving me with my stewed fruit AND a nice byproduct! I’d already added sugar to the fruit, just enough to take the very sour edge off. I’ve been drinking it with soda and ice and it’s very refreshing. It’s good in a G & T too.

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Brunch, Drinks, Something fruity, The Basics

Fruit lassi / smoothie

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This is basically breakfast in a glass. It’s a great way to start the day and get plenty of seasonal fruit. I wasn’t going to post this as it’s so simple but whenever I put a smoothie / lassi on Instagram it seems to get lots of attention!

I peel and chop the fruit I am using into my blender. Today I used 1 smallish mango, two small bananas, 3 passion fruit, two in the smoothie and one on top and the juice of some strawberries I’d stewed the other day. I also often put in avocado ( the one I planned to used today had gone off!). Then I put in two heaped tbsp. natural yoghurt. If there is any whey (liquid) on the top of the yoghurt I pour that in first. Then I cover the fruit in liquid either milk, fruit juice or coconut water and blend it. I don’t measure things but it always fills a big 500ml glass. Most blenders have a measure on the jug so you can use this. I then put the pulp of a passion fruit and some of the strawberry juice on top. If I’m using less sweet fruit I sometimes drizzle some honey on top.

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Drinks

Mulled wine

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This goes perfectly with mince pies and fills the house with lovely spicy festive aromas.

Frist I stud two or three oranges with cloves and put them in a saucepan with a couple of sticks of cinnamon and a few star anise. I also add some roselle flowers if I have them. I then put in a couple of cups of water and about a half a cup (or just over) of brown sugar and simmer this for about 10 mins so the flavours start to come out in the water. I then add about 2 litres / 3 bottles of red wine and two or three good slugs of brandy and warm the mulled wine through, you can taste it and add more brandy / sugar depending on your taste. You can then sere it or leave it for a couple of hours to ‘mull’ and warm it up again before serving. It’s lovey to keep it warm beside an open fire and then people can help themselves to more whenever they need a top up. Don’t let the wine get too hot / boil as the alcohol will evaporate!

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Drinks

Bubbles & brandy

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This is guaranteed to get your Christmas party going. I first had this was at a friend’s 21st birthday party and then I remember having them again in a hotel in the Blue Mountains in Australia stilling by a log fire. They were called Champagne Charlies, but I think a classic Champagne Charlie uses apricot brandy. I make mine with regular brandy. They are quick and easy to serve when lots of guests arrive at the same time at a party. I put a sugar cube in the bottom of several champagne flutes. Then as people arrive I pour some brandy into the glass, the amount depends a bit on the drinker as some people don’t like them too strong but no more than covering the sugar cube. Then I top the glass up with chilled sparkling wine. Most people come back for at least one more!

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Drinks, Edible gifts

Clyde’s Christmas Spirit

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I’ve been making this vodka infusion at Christmas for a few years now and it’s been called “Christmas in a glass”. It very easy but just takes some time for the flavours to infuse. You can also make it with white rum too.

In a pan warm about 4 heaped tbsp. of thick cut / dark (homemade style) marmalade to make it runny. Then using a funnel pour it either into an empty sterilized litre bottle, or a new liter bottle of vodka after removing about 100ml to make space for the additions. To this I add Christmas spices. A couple of sticks of cinnamon and a tsp. of cloves are the basics and depending on what you like you can add a small piece of nutmeg and or a star anise. Then I fill the bottle up with vodka. Leave it for a couple of weeks shaking occasionally and you will see the colours develop as the spices infuse with the vodka.  Put in the freezer a day or two before serving and serve in shot glasses, or make ‘Christmas bubbles’ put a shot of Christmas Spirit in a champagne flute and top it up with bubbles.

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Drinks

Roselle gin

I am experimenting for Christmas, infusing Gin with Roselle. I will keep you posted on how it goes, it looks so pretty and now on the second day has a lot more colour already, but in case any one else wants to try. I used the ‘petals’ from 10 rosella ‘flowers’ (I know they aren’t technically flowers) and 150g of sugar putting them in a sterilised litre bottle then filling it with gin. Alternatively pour about some of the gin from a new bottle, add the roselle and sugar and top it up again, then you won’t need to sterilize the bottle! I then gave it a few shakes to help the sugar dissolve. Hopefully I will be able to leave it till Christmas!

It turned out very well and makes a beautiful, refreshing pink drink, with a subtle flavor, when mixed with soda and ice and served with a slice of lime. It’s also good on the rocks with a slice of lime.

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Drinks, Edible gifts, Something sweet

Mars bar vodka

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We first had shots of this at Eat Me restaurant in Bangkok after dinner and loved it, after moving to Chiang Mai I’ve made it myself a few times, it’s very moreish! It’s similar to the chocolate orange vodka I made at Easter.

In a glass bowl above a pan of boling water I melted about 250g of Mars bars, stirring occasionally after they sated to melt. Once they had melted I poured some vodka, about 100ml out of a liter bottle, into the bowl and continued to heat it until it became smooth and  runny. Then I poured about 100 ml of vodka into an empty litre bottle, this will help to stop the chocolate mixture sticking to the bottom, then I poured in the chocolate mix through a funnel and put the cap on and shook the bottle to mix the vodka with the chocolate mixture. Then I topped up the bottle again with vodka until almost full and gave it a good shake. Once the mixture is combined you can fill the bottle. Leave it for a  couple of days, giving it a shake occasionally. Then put it in the freezer until you want to serve it.

mars vodka

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