It’s been raining for several days in Florida, and what better way to beat the rainy day blah feelings than by brewing up a small batch of sweet iced tea? The original Lipton recipe calls for 8 cups water, 2 tea bags, and 1/2 cup sugar. Stick it in the fridge for several hours. If you want a fast Lipton iced tea, steep 4 cups of water with 2 tea bags and stir in 1/2 cup sugar. Then, add 6 cups ice cubes! Here is the recipe I made today:
1 bag Lipton Iced Tea
4 cups water
1/4 cup white sugar + 1/8 cup more if you want it sweeter
Boil 4 cups of water and pour into a large Pyrex with the tea bag. Let steep 3-5 minutes.
Remove tea bag and stir sugar in. I like to add 1/4 cup sugar when I want a basic sweet tea but if I’m looking to have a really sweet drink I add the extra 1/8 cup in there!
I have found an amazing pick-me-up for the afternoon slump! Note: It contains a lot of caffeine. I love the Starbucks green tea latte (not found on the menu, I might add), but it can get pricey when you order it over and over. So, I decided to investigate this matcha powder business. I went over to Dorothy Lane Market and picked up some Republic of Tea Matcha powder for about $14. If I use 1.5 tsp per cup, it will make about 18 servings or so. Not bad!
I found the recipe for the green tea latte on this website.
1.5 tsp matcha powder
1 tbsp hot (not boiling) water
1 tsp sugar (I use 3)
1 cup skim milk
Sift the matcha powder through a mesh basket into the cup to get rid of lumps. Add the hot water to the powder and whisk quickly, or use a frother to make a smooth dark green paste. In a small saucepan, heat the milk and sugar over high heat, but do not bring to a boil. Small bubbles should be appearing on the surface and the edges of the saucepan when you remove it from the heat. Froth the milk for 20-30 seconds. The volume will double! Pour into the cup. Here, I add a step and froth the latte. Sprinkle with more matcha powder from the mesh basket.
The best blueberry lemon drop martini I’ve ever tasted? It’s at Fleming’s. I needed to create my own version.
After a lot of experimentation, this recipe yielded the tastiest martini.
1 oz lemon juice
2 oz blueberry (Stolichnaya) vodka
3 tsp simple syrup*
Pour the lemon juice and blueberries into the cocktail shaker first. Muddle the blueberries a bit (this will release the juices and give the martini that pretty pink/purple color). Add the vodka, simple syrup, and ice. Shake for 20 seconds and pour into a chilled martini glass!
*It is important that you use the right type of simple syrup because the two different recipes will yield different results. The original simple syrup recipe I used to make this martini has 2 parts sugar to 1 part water, and therefore, 3 tsp of simple syrup is very sweet. I think the martini tastes best that way. However, some use a simple syrup recipe of 1 part sugar to 1 part water, and 3 tsp of that will be less sweet. It makes a difference when mixed in with the drink. I prefer the first!
It’s cherry season, and that means I’m finding ways to incorporate cherries into all sorts of dishes. I’ll start with a cherry protein shake, using the Isopure Zero Carb Creamy Vanilla protein powder I just purchased. Here’s the recipe:
1 banana, cut into chunks
1/2 cup milk
1 small peach, quartered
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
6 frozen cherries
3-4 ice cubes
In a blender, puree the banana, milk, and peach. Add the protein powder. Add the frozen cherries and ice cubes. Blend until smooth.
I could write so much about Secrets Maroma Beach Resort in Cancun. Great food, beautiful beach, nice people. I discovered this delicacy the second night there, and that was the end of wine and beer for me. I was told how to make it while I was there, but their recipe was pretty complicated and I didn’t write it down. I did some online research, and it turns out it is a pretty complicated drink to make. There are tons of different recipes calling for various ingredients. I don’t feel like going out and buying a bunch of different liquors that I will only use once, so I decided to keep things simple. Trader Joes sells frozen mango chunks, and I figured that would be a great base for my mango martini.
4 chunks frozen mango, softened (about 1/2 cup) 1tsp sugar 2 tablespoons water Juice of 1 small lime (about 1 tablespoon) 1.5 oz vodka
Directions: In a blender, purée the mango, water, sugar and lime until desired consistency. Pour into cocktail shaker with vodka and ice. Serve in a sugar-rimmed glass.