Key Lime Time

I had a bunch of key limes leftover after using some to decorate my Rum and Coke Cupcakes.  It being a Saturday night and all, I decided to make a cocktail.  My new best friend, Pinterest, quickly offered up a recipe for a Key Lime Martini and it just so happened that I had all the required ingredients.

I doubled the recipe so the boyfriend could partake as well, so I needed one shot glass full of key lime juice.  As I stood squeezing my eighth tiny lime I thought to myself, this better be worth it.

It was most definitely worth it.  Creamy, sweet and a little tart.  The only way it could have been better was if I had some graham crackers to crush and rim the glass with.

Key Lime Martini from Sandra Lee on the Food Network Website

Ingredients

  • Ice
  • 2 shots vanilla vodka
  • 1/2 shot key lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons cream of coconut  (I put in an extra tablespoon – I LOVE cream of coconut!)
  • 1 shot pineapple juice

Directions

Add all ingredients to a martini shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a martini glass. Serve.

So I have my drink, I get to sleep in late tomorrow, and Ian Somerhalder has a spot on this old episode of Law & Order: SVU that I am watching.  Aside from the fact that a mosquito just came into my house and bit my elbow (seriously, isn’t there a way to eradicate these spawn of satan?!), life is good.

Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend!  Here’s one for the ladies…

Ian Somerhalder
Ian Somerhalder (Photo credit: emz_m)

Black and Bloopy

I never would have thought that a cocktail could look like a bruise, but tonight I have succeeded in creating one.  I don’t know if this is an accomplishment to be proud of, but here it is… the Black and Bloopy!

I bought this lovely little tub of Electric Lemonade Slush Mix from Tastefully Simple.  Add water, vodka (I used Three Olives Loopy) and then stick it in the freezer.  I did this a few weeks ago, and then promptly forgot about it.  Then today happened, and today was one of those days that needs to end with a cocktail.  After I hacked out enough to fill my glass I gave it a taste.  Good but VERY sour!  So I decided to add some grenadine for a little extra sweetness.  The end result was a very good, although oddly colored alcoholic slushy.

This one is pretty easy!  Buy some of this slush mix from your area Tastefully Simple rep (support your local business while you booze!), add water and the vodka of your choice per the instructions on the container and freeze!  When serving, if you want your drink to look like its been in a bar fight drizzle in some grenadine.

Sangria for the Sneezy Soul

Last weekend was perfect.  Sunny weather, an extra day off from work, the unofficial start to summer… Instead of going “down the shore” as we say here in Jersey, I came down with a cold.

When I get sick, I go all out.  I don’t spend a  day or two feeling like crap and then bounce back.  I get bring-in-the-CDC-and-maybe-a-voodoo-healer-for-good-measure sick.  The highlight of every day this week has been bedtime, except for that one night there was a freaking giant spider running around on my bed.  Unfortunately it was real, and not some Nyquil induced hallucination.

So now it’s another lovely Saturday and I STILL feel like garbage!  In order to cheer myself up (and in hopes that some alcohol might kill of the super germs that have taken over my body) I decided to make myself some sangria.

At first I browsed some recipes online but a lot of them required ingredients that I didn’t have, nor did I have the energy to put on some respectable clothes and go to the store.  So I decided to just wing it with stuff I had in the house.

Not only does it taste great, I just LOVE the colors!

I am now back in my Angela-shaped indentation on the couch with my tissues, sangria and a package of Twizzlers that my wonderful boyfriend picked up for me, watching Tough Love New Orleans.  I feel better already.  : )

Summer Green Sangria

Bottle of white wine (I used Smart Cookie Sauvignon Blanc)
20 fl oz lemon lime soda
6 fl oz pineapple juice
1/2 cup melon liqueur
Agave nectar to taste (if you want a little extra sweetness)
Blueberries, one orange, one kiwi

Combine wine, soda, pineapple juice and melon liqueur.  If desired, add agave nectar to taste.  Give it a good stir, then add blueberries, orange slices and sliced kiwi.  Let sit in the fridge for a least an hour to let the flavors combine.  Then…enjoy (preferably in a nice sunny spot on the porch)!

When Graduation Hands You Lemons…

This is a picture of me six years ago on the day I graduated from college –

Classy, aren’t I?

This is a picture that 2012 Angela would have sent 2006 Angela a few weeks before said graduation (if one could do those types of things…) –

College went something like this for me:

Ugh, I don’t know what I want to do, but I have to go to college….  Oooh, I’ll be a Liberal Arts major.  That’s broad enough….  Oh wait, I like to write – I’ll be an English major!….  If I have to write ANOTHER FLIPPING PAPER about a book I am going to go jump off the Ben Franklin Bridge….  I’ll switch my major to Political Science!  I like politics, and all that matters in the end is that I have a degree of some sort, right?….  RIGHT?!

I went to Rutgers University (it’s a good school) and my lack of direction aside, I was no dummy.  I graduated with honors.

Six years later, to quote Sandra Bullock‘s character Lucy in While You Were Sleeping, “I go to work and I sit in a box like a veal.”  Granted, she sat in a toll booth while I sit in a cubicle, and my lovely desk job has probably turned me into a much fattier piece of meat than a veal but you get the point.

Is this where I wanted to end up, with a yearly salary that is STILL a smaller number than the amount of money I had to take out in student loans to finance my useless Bachelor’s degree? (Still paying those back by the way…)  I guess that’s what happens when you don’t have a plan but even years later I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up (some more).

I guess I should just be happy that I’m not graduating NOW, when a picture like this would be the most apropos –

There is one good thing I took away from my college years (aside from that lovely, EXPENSIVE piece of paper hanging on the wall in my home office) and that is Starbucks Passion Tea Lemonade.  There was a Starbucks on campus.  Going there for my PTL fix was the only thing I looked forward to every day.

Last week at the grocery store I saw Tazo Iced Passion teabags.  The thought that I could now make my drink at home instead of paying Starbucks the six dollars and a kidney it costs for a Grande Tea these days made me very happy.  Then I had an even happier thought, and that involved Limoncello.  Enter, Tipsy Tea Lemonade…

This one is pretty simple.  Prepare the tea according to the directions on the box and sweeten it (or not!) to your tastes.  I used honey to sweeten mine.  Once the tea is chilled fill a glass with half tea and half lemonade.  As you can see, I used a bottle of convenience store lemonade (if you don’t have a Wawa where you live I’d like to offer my condolences) but if you want to get fancy feel free to make your own!  The last step is to add as much Limoncello as your drunken heart desires.  I used about a shot glass full.  Mix, add ice and ENJOY!

Cheers to all the recent grads!  Make this drink for your poor mothers when you all have to move back home for the next ten years…

Peanut Rum? Yum!

Peanut Rum Creme.  Sounds a little strange, no?  This is what I thought when I saw a drink called Banana Nut Bay on the menu at Rum Bar in Philadelphia last year.  However, other ingredients were Creme de Banana and cream of coconut and I figured something with those flavors could never be bad so I ordered it.

Oh Happy Day!  This drink was soooo good!  It reminded me of  boozy Gerber Baby Bananas.  (Yes, sometimes I buy a jar of baby bananas for a snack, so what?)  Now, it was last year that I had this drink.  I don’t know what made me think of it today but I checked out Rum Bar’s website and it appears that – for some bizarro reason – this tasty concotion is no longer on the menu.  For a brief second I was broken hearted, thinking I would never again taste such deliciousness, but then I remembered Google.

And so, here is the recipe!

1 oz Brugal Anejo Rum
1/2 oz Creme de Banana
1/2 oz Castries Peanut Rum Creme
1/2 oz cream of coconut
3 oz pineapple juice

Shake and serve with ice.  Thank Angela for introducing you to a taste of heaven…

But wait – there’s more!!  A few months after Banana Nut Bay, I was having brunch at Max Brenner’s and what do I see on the menu but another drink made with Peanut Rum Creme!  This drink was called Satisfaction Guaranteed, and it did not disappoint!  Castries Peanut Rum Creme, Caramel Liqueur and milk chocolate.  It was a damn good drink on its own…extra bonus points for presentation!

I would say Peanut Rum Creme would definitely make a a great addition to any home bar!

Cinco D’OH Mayo

So, the thing that sucks about writing a blog about things that you make is that when you don’t make anything, you have nothing to blog about! D’oh!

I haven’t been baking anything and despite enduring quite a few days in the past two weeks that have totally been worthy of adult beverage drinking, I haven’t been doing any of that either.  I have, however, been doing a lot of laundry.  How one man can create so many loads of laundry in the span of a week I will never understand.

Anywho, despite my utter lack of shaking, baking OR partying lately I do have a tasty drink recipe that I wanted to share in time for Cinco de Mayo….

Dancers at the annual Cinco de Mayo Festival i...
Dancers at the annual Cinco de Mayo Festival in Washington, D.C. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Beer Margaritas!  Or as I like to call them – BeerGaritas.

Margarita with lime in a margarita glass.
Margarita with lime in a margarita glass. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Let me preface this by saying (quite emphatically) that I despise beer.  It’s just gross.  Even on the rare occasion that I can find a beer that doesn’t make me want to scrub my tongue with a Brillo pad I do not enjoy drinking the stuff.

Brillo Pad logo
Brillo Pad logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

HOWEVER, I absolutely loved these beer Margaritas!

Beer Margaritas (link will take you to the original recipe!)

Ingredients

1 (12 fl oz) can frozen limeade concentrate
12 fl oz tequila
12 fl oz water
12 fl oz beer (I used Corona)
ice
1 lime, cut into wedges (optional)
salt (optional)

Mexican Beer: Corona 6-Pack
Mexican Beer: Corona 6-Pack (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Directions

Pour limeade, tequila, water and beer into a large pitcher.  Stir until well blended and limeade is melted (you may want to strain the pulp out, depending on preference).  Adjust with additional water if needed.  Add ice.  Rim margarita glass with salt and garnish with lime wedges.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fruit Loopy

I am a marketing major’s dream.  Slap some colorful artwork or something shiny on a product and I am drawn to it like a kid with ADD.  The most recent thing to catch my eye was Three Olives Loopy.  I was wandering up and down the vodka aisle at the liquor store while my boyfriend changed his mind for the millionth time about what beer he was going to buy and there it was – purple cap, blue, yellow, orange, pink and purple rings and that name – Loopy.  Vodka that tastes like Fruit Loops?!  Gimmie, gimmie!!!

It’s a rainy day today – perfect for staying in an experimenting with my pretty bottle of vodka.  I cracked it open and the smell of one of my favorite kiddie cereals wafted out.  This is going to be so easy, I thought to myself.  Mix the vodka with some of the heavy cream I have left from yesterday’s chocolate mousse cake and I should have a drink that tastes just like the leftover milk from a bowl of Fruit Loops.  I poured a shot of vodka and a splash of cream into my cocktail shaker with some ice, gave it a quick shake and then went in for the taste test.

WHY do things smell so good and then taste like CRAP?!  Coffee, smelly markers, Loopy vodka.  Unfair.  It didn’t taste at all like Fruit Loops and had that nasty cheap vodka burn.  I added some grenadine and shook again.  Still yucky.  As a last resort I tried adding some cherry fruit juice I had in the fridge and then…

Ahhhhhhhh!!!  If Toucan Sam was a boozer, this would be his drink of choice.

 

Fruit Loopy Ingredients

One shot Three Olives Loopy
One shot cherry fruit juice
Splash of cream/half & half/milk to taste
Splash of grenadine
Ice

Directions

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake it up (oooh-oooh)!

If you like, rim your martini glass with some crushed Fruit Loops before pouring in your cocktail.

Piña Colada and Sweet Tea Vodka

Don’t worry, I’m not making Sweet Tea Piña Coladas.  This post is a two-fer!  First off – Piña Colada cupcakes!!

There was another birthday in the office last week.  This time I went with Piña Colada cupcakes.  I recalled an at-home jewelry demonstration where the birthday girl consumed quite a few pineapple Jell-o shots made with coconut rum, so I knew she’d love the flavor combo.

At first I considered incorporating some coconut rum into my cupcake batter, but all I had was a bottle of 90 Proof Parrot Bay.  I’ve baked using a little bit of alcohol before (made cupcakes with some Caramel Bailey’s once) but for some reason the thought of sticking 90 proof booze in a hot oven filled my head with thoughts of cupcakes on fire so I decided to skip it.

Instead, I grabbed another boxed cake mix and in place of the water I used pineapple juice.  I also folded in some crushed pineapple.  I went with my basic buttercream recipe and put in a little coconut extract.  One of my favorite parts of a Piña Colada is the little plastic sword skewered through a cherry and a chunk of pineapple, so I mirrored that on my cupcakes using a dried pineapple bit instead of fresh fruit.

I seem to recall an episode of Cupcake Wars where the baker got bashed for putting a maraschino cherry on top of her cupcakes as decoration but the judges were obviously being idiots that day.  There’s a reason the phrase “cherry on top” exists!

The balance of pineapple and coconut was perfect, and I ended up helping myself to a second one of these before the work day was done.

Cupcake Wars style

In other news that actually does involve alcohol (time for all you underage kids to go back to looking up Justin Bieber or whatever it is you do these days)… A coworker was telling me about Jeremiah Weed Sweet Tea Vodka on Friday afternoon.  I’ve heard of Sweet Tea vodka obviously, and I had seen this brand in the liquor stores but hadn’t tried it. She said that you can make a great boozy Arnold Palmer by mixing it with lemonade.

That night, I was out at a local bar/restaurant and what should be on the happy hour menu but a Jeremiah Weed Arnold Palmer for just $5?  Yup!  I had to try it and I’m glad I did!  It came out in a mason jar type glass garnished with a lemon wedge and tasted dangerously just like iced tea lemonade.  I’m not sure what the ratio of lemonade to sweet tea vodka was, so I can’t give you an exact recipe but I’m sure you won’t mind experimenting to figure it out on your own!

If I hadn’t been the chauffeur for the evening I would have doubled up on this drink the way I did on those Piña Colada cupcakes!

 

Pineapple Cupcakes

Ingredients:

White boxed cake mix and oil and eggs listed on box
8 oz can crushed pineapple
pineapple juice

Directions:

Prepare mix according to directions on box, subbing in pineapple juice for the amount of water called for.  In my case, I needed one cup of water.  I drained the juice from the crushed pineapples into a measuring cup and then used Dole pineapple juice to get the 1 cup needed.  Once you have beaten the batter for the requisite two minutes, gently fold in the crushed pineapple and bake according to the directions on the box.

For the coconut buttercream, use the same basic recipe from my Cherry Lemonade cupcakes but instead of the grenadine use 1 teaspoon of coconut extract.

 

 

Cadbury Dream

 

While scrolling through Pinterest the other day (instead of doing something productive like laundry) I came across a recipe for a jelly bean martini.  With all the delicious varieties or Easter candy available you would think there would be tons of Easter themed cocktails but I have only seen a few.  I thought of all the different types of jelly beans, coconut eggs, peanut butter eggs, Cadbury Creme Eggs…

There had to be a Cadbury Creme Egg Cocktail!  I did a search.  I found a recipe for a Cadbury Caramel Cream Martini.  While that sounds delicious, in my opinion nothing beats the taste of the original Cadbury Creme Egg.

Cadbury eggs, a common Easter candy. One is br...

Since I couldn’t find a recipe I decided to invent my own!  I got some Cadbury Creme Eggs at the drugstore (buy one get one free – yes!) and then headed to the liquor store.  I didn’t really know what type of liquor I wanted to use but came upon the vodka section first.

PB&J vodka, cucumber vodka, bacon vodka (breakfast martini anyone?), a vodka flavor called Dude that is the color of Mountain Dew…there are so many bizarre vodka flavors out there that I was half hoping to spot one called Cadbury Creme Egg.  Alas, I did not, so I headed to the next aisle.  I was considering the Baileys when I saw something called RumChata – a rum cream.

I had never heard of this before but I thought – cream, Creme Egg, sounds good!  I brought it home and as soon as I opened it I knew it wasn’t going to work.  All I could smell was cinnamon.  Definitely not an ingredient I want to mix with my chocolate egg.  Since I opened it, I tried a little nip of the RumChata and it is REALLY GOOD stuff.  I will definitely be experimenting with that in the future, but I had a Cadbury Creme Egg Cocktail to concoct.

I decided to try to use some of the Pinnacle Chocolate Whipped I had on the shelf.  I poured a shot of that into my trusty Magic Bullet, then added a splash of chocolate milk (I used chocolate soy milk since that was all I had).  Next I chopped up a Cadbury Creme Egg (messy!), dumped that in there  with some ice and blended.  I think adding the ice before I blended the creme egg might not have been the best idea because the creme filling got a little hard from the cold and I had to chop at it quite a bit with a spoon to break it down.  So if you want to make this I’d suggest blending the egg and the liquids first, then adding ice and you definitely want to make this because it was AWESOME!  I rimmed my martini glass with some of the leftover yellow sanding sugar I had from making Peeps Bunny Cookies, poured in my mixture and voila!  The Cadbury Dream was born…

 

Cheers to the Easter Bunny!

 

Hop, Skip and Go Naked?

No, it’s not some kind of adult playground game.  It’s a cocktail!  I stumbled upon this gem while poking around on my favorite recipe site – Allrecipes.com.

If you Google “Hop Skip and Go Naked recipe” you will most likely find a bunch of recipes that involve a combination of beer, vodka and lemonade (ew?).   You might also find a cookie recipe or two.  Cookies are good, but this drink is better!

Simple ingredients – cherry vodka, Triple Sec, cranberry juice and grenadine.  Tastes just like Hawaiian Punch.

Hawaiian Punch Fruit Juicy Red
Hawaiian Punch Fruit Juicy Red (Photo credit: Like_the_Grand_Canyon)

It is SO good that it’s quite easy to knock back a few, kind of forgetting the vodka part, until suddenly… you’re drunk!   Thus, I have renamed this drink Hawaiian Punch Drunk.  It’s a much more suitable moniker, and removes any connections to that hillbilly beer/lemonade concoction.  Whatever you call it though, you should definitely try it – especially if you live in my neck of the woods where it’s going to be 80 degrees tomorrow!