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Cover: Shaken and stirred

Desserts

27Sep 12

Mojito Jelly Shots

Mojito Jelly ShotsWarning: Mojito Jelly Shots can turn you seriously silly! Note to self and guests: Remember they contain alcohol!

I remember first making Mojito Jelly Shots one evening for a dinner party with close friends. Two of our friends were Cuban, and we often had competitions to see who could prepare the best Mojitos. So the jelly shots were my way of stepping up the game. The after-dinner treat turned, what started as a fairly reserved dinner, into one very funny evening. The combination of the refreshing Mojito cocktail with a chilled jelly is just divine.

As the idea just came to me during the morning, I didn’t prepare with shot glasses or individual serving bowls. I just made the jelly in one large bowl, and we all ate from the bowl with tablespoons! However, I recommend that you serve the jelly in shot glasses or create unique forms with jelly or ice moulds for a more professional look.

If you are preparing the Mojito Jelly Shots for an evening party, then you need to prepare them first thing in the morning. If they are for lunch or afternoon parties, then you should prepare them the night before. There is nothing worse than a runny jelly!

If you enjoy mint-flavoured drinks, then you could also have a go at a delicious Mint Julep.

Mojito Jelly Shots
Author: 
Recipe type: Cocktail
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12-16
 
Cuban Jelly Shots. Combine the delicious minty, cool refereshing Mojito with jelly.
Ingredients
  • 10 leaves of gelatine
  • 80cl sparkling water or soda water
  • 10cl white rum – Havana Club Añejo is my preferred choice
  • 9 tbsp brown sugar
  • Bunch of fresh mint – chopped finely
  • Juice of 4 limes
  • 2 limes finely sliced
Instructions
  1. Crush the mint in a cocktail shaker (or with a pestle and mortar).
  2. Add the rum, brown sugar and lime juice and shake thoroughly.
  3. Now add the sparking water and mix thoroughly.
  4. Strain the mixture, grinding the mint into the strainer to ensure that you get as much of the mint flavour as possible.
  5. Dissolve your gelatine leaves as per the instructions.
  6. Add and stir your Mojito mix into the gelatine.
  7. Pour into 5cl shot glasses, small paper cups or jelly or ice moulds. If you are using shot glasses or cups, fill them up ¾ of the way.
  8. Refrigerate for four to five hours until they are set.
  9. Garnish with chopped mint leaves and serve with a smile.

 

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14Jul 12

Watermelon Sangria

Watermelon SangriaI told you about my first trip to Spain when I was 19. Well, last summer I returned to visit a friend’s son who is studying history at Granada University. On arrival, I was met by 10 jolly looking fellows who all had glasses in their hands. It was Friday evening, and they had decided to make a huge sangria in my honour. But not the classic sangria – rather, watermelon sangria! Today, I want to tell you about this drink, which is an ideal choice for an evening on the porch with friends.

As I´ve mentioned, sangria normally consists of a bottle of cheap red wine, chopped fruit, and a sweetener. This particular version I discovered on my last trip is a bit different and made specifically to bring out the flavour of the watermelon, which was excellent!

As the guest of honour, I was enlightened with the recipe of the sangria the merry young men had concocted, which I want to share with you. They also brought Spanish potato omelette for me to try – it is a typical “tapa”. If you visit Spain, don’t leave without trying some!

Just one piece of advice on the sangria: the amount of spirits added into the mix is up to the person making it. I share the measurements we used, but those amounts are open to interpretation. And that is exactly what makes it dangerous, especially in the company of 10 students on a Friday evening.

Watermelon Sangria
Author: 
Recipe type: Cocktail
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
 
A fruity twist on the classic sangria
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle of dry white wine
  • 1 kilo of watermelon, cubed and deseeded
  • 3 limes, chopped
  • 10cl rum (Brugal is a good choice.)
  • 8cl citrusy syrup
  • 10cl triple sec
  • Abundant Ice
Instructions
  1. Mix the white wine with the fruit in a 1 litre pitcher, and let it sit for a full day in a refrigerator to allow time for the fruit flavours to blend with the wine.
  2. Add ice, rum, syrup and triple sec, stirring it together well.
  3. Serve in tall glasses with good company.


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10Jul 12

Peruvian Algarrobina

Peruvian Algarrobina
Unlike the Pisco Sour, which is claimed by both the Peruvians and the Chileans, I think it’s safe to say that the Algarrobina cocktail (made with the spirit Pisco) is uniquely Peruvian. When I was in Peru, it was offered to me as a pre-dinner drink, but I prefer to reserve this creamy and sweet, eggnog style cocktail for after dinner, as the mixture of algarrobina or carob syrup, condensed milk and egg yolk makes it a dessert in itself!

Algarrobina is a syrup produced from the pods of the Black Carob tree, a leguminous tree that grows in South America. The carob syrup that you can get in Europe is most likely to be from the Carob tree, which is native to the Mediterranean region, but is similar to the one used for Algarrobina. Carob syrup is often used to make an alternative for chocolate, as it contains neither caffeine nor an alkaloid that is found in chocolate and that can be toxic to some people and pets.

If you have a really sweet tooth, you could pair it with this basic sponge cake recipe. Eat them separately, or pour over the cocktail on the soft sponge for a moist treat.

PERUVIAN ALGARROBINA
Author: 
Recipe type: Cocktail
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
Ingredients
  • 6cl Peruvian Pisco
  • 1.5cl carob syrup
  • 3cl condensed milk
  • 1 small egg yolk
  • 3 ice cubes
  • ground cinnamon for garnish
Instructions
  1. Mix all the ingredients except the cinnamon in a blender, until the ice has liquified.
  2. Serve in a chilled glass and sprinkle with cinnamon.

 

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