Earth Day Organic Sangria

Remember every day is Earth Day! This sangria naturally creates an earthy green color after a couple of days. Therefore this can also be a St. Patrick’s Day drink.

Earth Day Sangria picture

Ingredients:

Organic white wine*

Organic white rum

Organic Seedless cucumber (English or Persian)

Organic Limes

Organic Kiwi

Organic Green Grapes**

Organic Granny Smith Apples

Gingerale, tonic or soda

 

Get a container with lid large enough to hold sangria (but that still fits in your fridge). Clean all the fruit and slice in consistent size pieces. Add the sliced fruit, about one cup of rum and one full bottle of wine. Cover and put in the refrigerator for at least 48 hours.  When ready to serve add the gingerale and stir. Transfer to a serving pitcher or punch bowl and have tongs or a ladle nearby for the fruit.

*I like to use a Moscato. If you can’t find organic look for made with organic grapes. If you can’t find that look for local to your area. They even make a sparkling Moscato which you could use in place of the gingerale or soda. Just make sure to have it chilled but don’t add until you are ready to serve.

**You can freeze the grapes after washing instead of adding right away. Add them when you are ready to serve and it helps keep the sangria chilled.

 

Four Festive Simple Syrups For All Your Holiday Cocktails

To simplify your holiday entertaining, or just for yourself, make these four flavored simple syrups. Great for both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Use organic spiced rum, organic vodka or your favorite liquor base and make a martini. Try with soda, tonic or gingerale.  Add to champagne, punch, hot chocolate, coffee or tea. You can add, substitute, combine and play around with these according to your preferences. Put them in a cute bottle with a ribbon and they make great hostess gifts too!

 

left to right- mulled spice, cranberry, peppermint, pomegranate

Making your own simple syrup is a much healthier alternative to buying by avoid high fructose corn syrup (and you can make your organic). Basic simple syrup is simply 1:1 ratio of  (organic) sugar and water. You add both ingredients to a saucepan and bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about five minutes. The flavored syrups cook a little longer to infuse the flavor into the syrup.

Cranberry Organic Simple Syrup

  • 1 1/2 cups organic cranberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup organic sugar
  • 1 cup water

Put all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes. Strain through a wire mesh strainer into a bowl and let it sit until cooled to room temperature. Store in a  glass container with tight fitting lid in the refrigerator.

My favorite drink with the cranberry simple syrup: Crusoe Spiced Rum (organic) with the simple syrup and the juice of two clementines, on the rocks. Amazing.

Pomegranate Organic Simple Syrup

  • 2 cups pomagrante juice
  • 1 cup sugar

Add pomegranate juice and sugar to a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes. Store in a  glass container with tight fitting lid in the refrigerator. This is actually what real grenadine is, not that nasty stuff you buy with all the artificial ingredients.

Pomegranate simple syrup is real grenadine. Commercial grenadine no longer resembles this and is just so bad. Make your own and use in any drink that has grenadine. Also great for a pomegranate margarita! When I made mine I used real pomegranates not the juice which is more work but worth it. Using the juice still makes a good grenadine.

Peppermint Organic Simple Syrup

  • 1 cup organic sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 drops of peppermint extract

Make your basic simple syrup by dissolving the sugar in water. Add a couple drops of the peppermint extract to taste. The extract is very strong and a little goes a long way. Better to put less in and add if you need more.

I love peppermint/chocolate combo this time of year. This is a great one for making your own peppermint hot chocolate, please use fair trade chocolate! You can substitute this for any drinks that call for peppermint schnapps, but use less. If you really want to get into it you could add some  organic vodka to the syrup and have your own peppermint schnapps!

Mulled Spice Organic Simple Syrup

  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup organic sugar
  • 1 each orange & lemon peel
  • star anise
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 8 whole cloves

Put all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes. Strain through a wire mesh strainer into a bowl and let it sit until cooled to room temperature. Store in a glass container with tight fitting lid in the refrigerator.

The mulled spice syrup is probably my favorite. You may have noticed from the picture above this one had less than the others! All of my spices used are organic. This one makes the home smell like holidays which is double bonus. Really its great for just as many non-alcoholic drinks as it is for the cocktails. I made a cocktail with crusoe spiced rum, this syrup and Hansens mandrin lime soda  in a collins glass. Delish!

Berry Berry Berry Good Punch

Perfect for summer and full of good stuff! Grab your punch bowl and add these to taste. Be sure to buy organic with the berries, watermelon and kombucha. If you don’t have kombucha add ginger ale or a lemon/lime soda.

Strawberries

Blackberry Simple Syrup

Fair Goji Berry Liquor

VeeV Acai Berry Liquor

Watermelon Juice

Kombucha

Santa Cruz Organic Raspberry Lemonade

Organic Chai Sweet Tea Cocktail

 

When I was in my corporate job years back I went through a Starbucks Chai Latte phase. Loved them but I would crash every time I drank one from the high sugar content. Well with the summer heat and a hankering for the spiced tea flavor I have come up with a much better Chai Tea. I bet if I was allowed to have vodka in my tea back when I was a suit it would have made Starbucks more fun…

 

As with all my recipes the measurements are loose guidelines. Play with your drinks keep adding until you get it to your taste.

 

 

2 oz Organic Vanilla Vodka

1/2 oz Sumptuous Ginger Syrup

Brewed and chilled Organic Chai Tea

Ginger Kombucha (optional)

Organic lemon for garnish

 

Fill a tall pint or iced tea glass with ice. Add vodka and ginger syrup, fill with chai tea. If you want, add a splash of ginger kombucha for a little heathy kick. Stir, garnish with lemon and add your reusable glass straw. Sip and enjoy!

 

Recipe notes & Link Love:

To make your own vanilla vodka simply take a couple of whole organic vanilla beans and split lengthwise. Add them to a small mason jar and fill with organic vodka. Let it set for a couple of weeks and remove the beans, strain vodka with cheesecloth.

My tea was made as sun tea, I used decaf so I can drink these and not be up all night. See my post on making sun tea here.

To learn more about the benefits of Kombucha check out Kombucha Kamp.

Glass straws I use are by Strawesome-they are awesome!

The ginger syrup is from http://www.sumptuoussyrups.com/ , cool company and everything is made fair trade and organic!

with Ginger Syrup

 

Summer In A Glass Organic Cocktail

This drink is super easy and perfect for afternoon parties, bridal/baby showers or days around the pool all summer long.

Organic, local seedless watermelon                      

One Coconut Water

Papagayo Organic Spiced Rum

Cut watermelon into chunks &  put in blender to juice. Depending on size of watermelon (and blender) you may need to do this in batches. Add coconut water to equal 1:1 ratio with watermelon juice, add spiced rum * and ice & blend well.

You can stop here and enjoy as a slushy drink or you can pour into a pitcher or punch bowl and add gingerale & serve over ice. Both ways are delicious! Another modification is adding champagne (don’t add gingerale if you are doing this) to make a summer champagne punch.

*If you plan on drinking these all day you may want to go light on the rum. Conversely, if it’s a short two-three hour party you can add a bit more. If you anticipate serving both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks omit the rum when blending and have it as a mix (or punch). The rum can be added separately and served up or on the rocks, shaken or stirred. I love them on the rocks in my mason jar with a reusable glass straw!

 

Both the watermelon & coconut water are super hydrating and naturally sweet. This really is a perfect summer drink.

Cheers!

 

 

 

Eco-kaze (greened up kamikaze drink)

Since I’m on an 80’s kick I figured I could update a common drink from then and see how I could make it green. The kamikaze was definitely a drink I poured about a million of back in the day. Back in the 80’s this was mostly served as a shot, some people drank it on the rocks. If you googled a recipe for them now you will find them with the option served up in a martini glass. Yeah that didn’t happen back then, our lace gloves would probably make the glass slip and break.

Kamikaze:

1/12 oz Vodka

1 oz Triple Sec

1 oz Roses Lime

As a shot add ingredients in a shaker over ice. Shake well and strain into shot glasses. You could strain and pour into a martini glass too. On the rocks just pour ingredients in the order listed. Either way garnish with a lime.

GQ Eco-kaze

1/12 oz Organic Vodka

1 oz Cointreau

1/2 oz Organic Simple Syrup (recipe follows)

1/2 Organic Lime Juice (fresh squeezed is optimal and I also like Santa Cruz brand)

As a shot add ingredients in a shaker over ice. Shake well and strain into shot glasses. You could strain and pour into a martini glass too. On the rocks just pour ingredients in the order listed. Either way garnish with a lime. I drank mine on the rocks but 20 years ago they were the shots.

A greened up version of a kamikaze drink

Organic Simple Syrup

1 cup water

1 cup organic sugar

In a small saucepan bring water & sugar to a boil. Stir well and reduce heat and simmer until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Once cooled store in a glass jar in the fridge. It will be good for a month. You can make larger batches using the same ratio.

 

 

 

Organic Cucumber Bloody Mary

If you enjoy a good Bloody Mary on a Sunday morning or you just ‘need’ one from last nights over indulgence, here is a great recipe. You can make up the mix ahead of time add spices to your preference. Reuse an empty bottle or mason jar to store it in.

Of course you can make it easier on yourself (especially if you are hungover) and buy an organic mix like ModmixWasabi Bloody Mary.

Organic Cucumber Bloody Mary

For the Bloody Mary

Add ice to your glass
Squeeze a wedge of lemon over ice
Add 1.5 oz Organic Cucumber Vodka (Square One, Rain or Crop)
Fill with mix leaving room for garnishes
shake well -if you don’t have a shaker glass improvise with a mason jar with lid or something similar
Garnish with cucumber spear, celery stick, olives, lemon, lime, pickle spear or whatever your favorites are.

 

Bloody Mary Mix: (Organic ingredients as much as possible)

Tomato Juice
Olive juice
Lemon juice
Lime juice
Worcestershire sauce
Hot Sauce
Horseradish
Pepper
Celery Salt
Garlic Salt

Add spices to taste, shake well and store refrigerated.

 

Keep it eco and ditch the plastic one time use straws. Invest in a set of resuable glass straws from Strawesome for your home eco bar.

 

Spiced Rumkin Organic Cocktail

Crusoe Spiced Rum

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Kombucha

Pumpkin Butter

Vanilla Simple Syrup

 

This recipe makes a pitcher. I pretty much poured without measuring (I’m so Rachel Ray of bartending) so adjust to taste if you are just making a couple of drinks. I got the Kombucha from Kombucha Kamp, you can check out her website here. If you don’t like Kombucha or can’t find it you could try it with ginger ale.

 

Start by putting 6-7 tablespoons of pumpkin butter in a pitcher then add the full bottle of kombucha, half bottle (more or less depending on how strong you want them) rum and 5-6 oz of the vanilla simple syrup. Add ice and stir well- until the ice is melted. Don’t try to shake this it will be a mess all over from the natural carbonation of the kombucha. You can serve this in a up or on the rocks.

Pumpkin Butter rocks! Make a batch and use in for your toast, oatmeal, and now for your cocktails! I don’t really have a recipe I use but they are easy to find on a google search like this one here. As always, use organic ingredients as much as possible.

Simple syrups are easy to make. It’s equal parts water and (organic) sugar. Just heat in a pan until the sugar is dissolved let it cool and refrigerate. Get creative and have a couple different kinds. Ok ,I will do a separate post on these but for now I just added a whole vanilla bean to my simple syrup to make vanilla simple syrup. It’s so simple.

This drink has the health benefits of the kombucha and the pumpkin. Combine that with using organic rum from a company that plants a tree with every bottle sold and you have a tasty guilt free do-gooder cocktail!