Tuesday, January 16, 2018


I'd been craving Lapsang Souchong, smoked black tea, for some time. Finally, the little hippie store had it in stock again!

What would I call this? A sort of milk punch? A syllabub? A milky iced tea? Not sure. In any event, it was rich and perfumey. Lovely both sweetened and not. Bubbly, too.

- Brewed Lapsang Souchong (or any other smoked black) tea
- Whole milk
- Plain seltzer
- Sweetener (if desired)
- Orange slice
- Crushed Ice

Fill your glass about 1/4 - 1/3 full of crushed ice.  Add a half and half mix of milk and tea.  Sweeten to taste, if desired.  This is very nice unsweetened, too.  Mix.  Top with seltzer water and twist of orange.

Monday, January 15, 2018


Low pressure got to me today, so kept things simple.  The quinine in the tonic, along with the headache pill, did a world of good.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Sunday Brunch.

Dry January, Day 14:  Happy Two Weeks!

Felt like a good day to break out the new waffle iron again, both to try out a new recipe and to make something cheerful for a cold, gray weekend day. 

Served this up with plenty of strong coffee and a mimosa*, of course.

Champagne has always given me a headache, though other non champagne cremants never bothered too much. The Cawston Press Cloudy Apple soda is like the best Cremant de Loire, only better, as it doesn't leave me drowsy with a headachy edge afterwards.

* Normally sparkling wine topped off with orange juice.  I did half and half freshly-squeezed grapefruit juice and apple soda.

Saturday, January 13, 2018


I rarely go out for hot cho-co-late as mine is hard to beat. It is also very rich, so not to be abused. 
Instead of the usual Latin American inspired aromatics, tried a more Mediterranean combination of citrus peel and lavender: a keeper.

For two:
- 1/4 c. Dark cocoa powder
- 1 T butter
- 2 c. whole milk
- 1/4 c. cream
- pinch of sea salt
- stevia / other sweetener to taste (I used approx 10-15 drops)
- 2 T shredded citrus peel (lemon + orange)
- 10- 15 drops lavender essence

Melt butter in heavy-bottomed pan.  Add cocoa and salt, stirring until smooth.  Add cream.  Mix to break down any lumps.  Add milk, sweetener, shredded citrus peel and lavender essence.  Heat until nearly boiling, let simmer for a minute or two.  Beat until frothy.  Garnish with citrus peel, or even lavender flowers, if you'd like.

Friday, January 12, 2018


A shrub is a vinegar-based cordial, used as a flavoring in cocktails, both alcoholic and non. 

Since I still had some cranberries kicking around since Thansgiving, used them in my maiden attempt at such a preparation.  Recipe here.

Not bad! The sugar and vinegar balance each other out well. Might try something other than cloves to spice this with next time. Oh: a little goes a long way, too. Used maybe 1.5 Tbs for 12 oz of seltzer.

Thursday, January 11, 2018


How did Egg Creams get named, as they contain neither eggs, nor cream? Always liked these, the Southerners' (all things being relative) fizzy version of a Boston milkshake. (Milk and flavored syrup, shook. No ice cream; that'd be a frappe.) 

Instead of the traditional chocolate or vanilla syrup, I used rose flavored, with a bit of spice thrown into the shaker. Housemate, my guinea pig, asked me where the lamb vindaloo was that we should have been having for dinner tonight.

Sweeter than the other drinks so far, but perfumey. Could see making this one again, but going lighter on the syrup.

For two:

- 11/2 c. milk
- flavored syrup of your choosing to taste (I used rose, approx. 1/4 c, as the label said roughly 2T per serving; that was a bit intense.  Thinking that maybe half that would be ideal.)
- seltzer (I used orange)
- ice

Pour milk, ice, syrup and any other flavors you might like into shaker.  Shake until frothy.  Pour into two highball glasses, top with seltzer.  Garnish, if desired.  I used a cardamom pod, some rose petals and ginger with this. 

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Mango Madness Miercoles.

The mangoes picked up over the weekend ripened up perfectly: not too sweet, not too tart. Solid, too. Blended them with pineapple, coconut water, ginger, among other good things.

Was a good pick me up, and not just for the sugar. Think I was working on a dearth of potassium today.

For two:

- 3/4 c. chopped mango
- 3/4 c. frozen pineapple chunks
- 1 c. coconut water
- 2 T. coconut cream
- powdered ginger, cinnamon to taste
- seltzer
- pomegranate seeds (optional)

Blend mango, pineapple, coconut, and ginger.  Pour into your highball glasses.  Top with seltzer, sprinkle with a bit more ginger and some cinnamon.  Add pomegranate seeds, if you'd like.  Thinking that they'd float, I tossed a few in as a garnish.  Well, they sunk.  No matter:  they did look pretty floating around in the drink, my little Dry January Garnets.