“If I had my way, I’d wear jewelry, a great pair of heels and nothing else.” ~ Jada Pinkett Smith
My friend Patti Woods designs beautiful jewelry. Being a professional and classy woman, her jewelry is carefully and passionately created to make you look fabulous. With my mild addiction to silver, I do my best to keep her in business. You might say I am the “Audrey” to her “Tiffany.”
Patti does everything with class and style just like these great jello cosmos of hers. Prepare them for your next classy picnic.
Patti’s Classic Classy Cosmos
2 tablespoons of unflavored gelatin powder
1/2 cup cold water
1 1/4 cups cranberry juice
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup sprite
1/2 cup vodka
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 cup fresh raspberries
1 cup fresh blueberries
1. In a bowl pour the cold water. Evenly sprinkle gelatin over cold water and allow the gelatin to absorb for 2 minutes.
2. In a saucepan, bring cranberry juice and sugar to a boil. Stir into gelatin until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
3. Allow to cool and stir in Sprite, Vodka and lime juice. Refrigerate until thickened.
4. Gently fold in raspberries and blueberries. Spoon into martini glasses and refrigerate until firm. When ready to serve garnish with mint leaves.
“Love makes the world go round? Not at all. Whiskey makes it go round twice as fast.” ~ Compton Mackenzie
Note to my non-Canadian visitors: In the Great White North here, we call our whisky “rye” because it has rye grain added to the mash and a “Rye & Ginger” is a popular drink. My hubby keeps his rye in the freezer. See the video at the end of the post.
It was as mild, sunny afternoon, after cooking at a client’s house, when I passed a “drive thru” car wash and thought I should go in. After chatting to the cash wash guy about cooking – he noticed the uniform – I drove in. Relaxing and reading my notes, I was suddenly jolted alert. Coming right through the water was the wash guy! He jumped out of the curtains in the actual car wash and banged on my truck, shrieking, “You are in “Drive,” Lady!!!” (instead of Neutral)
“Jeez! It said Drive Thru,” I thought.
Now I know why I was going through so fast!! I just thought I was being very efficient! He probably was worried about the Beemer in front of me!
It’s been a long chilly winter, but the maple syrup will be running soon. Here is a great Canadian recipe.
Rye and Ginger Butterflied Leg of Lamb
2 tablespoon (25 ml) Dijon mustard
2 tablespoon (25 ml) Maple syrup
¼ cup (50 ml) rye
½ cup ginger ale
2 teaspoon (10 ml) grated fresh ginger
2 teaspoon (10 ml) ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) cayenne
3 lb (1.5 kg) butter flied lamb leg
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon flour
¼ cup (50 ml) ginger ale
¼ cup (50 ml) rye
2 tablespoon (25 ml) maple syrup
2 tablespoon (25 ml) Dijon Mustard
1 cup (250 ml) chicken or beef stock
1. Combine mustard, maple syrup, rye, ginger ale, ginger, cumin and cayenne in a small bowl. Brush over lamb leg. Season with pepper. Marinate in zip lock bag overnight in refrigerator.
2. Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C).
3. Place lamb, fat side up, on rack in a roasting pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, basting occasionally or until juices runs slightly pink.
4. Place lamb on a carving board and tent with foil, letting it rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile make sauce.
5. Discard all fat from roasting pan but 1 tablespoon. Stir in flour, then deglaze the pan with the rye, scraping up meat bits. Stir in ginger ale, maple syrup, mustard and stock. Bring to boil, boil 3 to 5 minutes or until reduced by half. Sauce should be thick enough to coat a spoon. Season with salt and pepper.
6. To serve, carve into thin slices and drizzle sauce over lamb.
Monica and her dad are very close and they have an annual tradition; they make wine together at a local wine makers. It is a special father-daughter venture and each year they choose a new red grape juice to work with. They have made Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet, Cabernet-Sauvignon and several others.
While she teaches grade 5 students by day, on the holidays Monica might be your tour guide on a bus trip to Montreal or New York. She has been to New York enough times that she has several favourite places. It was at a little Italian restaurant in NYC where she fell in love with their sangria and she set out to make her own version at home in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada.
Monica loves to entertain and invite people to her home. When it comes to party hostesses, she is one of the best. She is especially known for her delicious sangria. She has worked hard to find the right mix and at her last party I got a chance to have a few sips of it myself. I just loved it!
I find that sangrias can sometimes have a bit of a dry edge, but Monica’s is a smooth as silk. Her key ingredient cherry brandy. It works wonderfully.
“I Love NY” Sangria
1 750 ml bottle of Monica’s red wine
1/2 cup cherry brandy or cherry whiskey
1/2 cup triple sec
1/2 cup peach schnapps
1/2 cup lemonade
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup Sprite
1. Mix the liquid ingredients together in a pitcher or punch bowl. Monica pours her sangria into large plastic pop bottles which are nice to pour from and make it easy to store.
2. Monica keeps a bowl of frozen berries nearby to spoon into each cup as it is served.
Note: You want to look for cherry brandy specifically, not Kirsch. Kirsch is a cherry brandy that is made with the whole cherry, including the pit. It works really well in my Flaming Cherries Jubilee, but is too bitter for Sangria.