Herbal cocktails are completely on trend these days and Thanksgiving is the prime time to transfer those traditional herbal flavors from food to drink. Trust me, whipping up a cocktail is easier than you think and best of all, if you burn the turkey, no one will notice!
I have an easy herbal syrup recipe that won’t require you to take yet another trip to the market. Just by using a few of the ingredients that you’ve already lined up for your Thanksgiving dinner, you can create an herbal infused syrup for your very own signature cocktail.
Here are a few tips to get you started with using herbs in your home bar…
- Herbs can be used in several ways including infused in syrups, bitters and liquors; they can be muddled in cocktails; and herbs are great as a garnish.
- The important thing to remember about making syrup is that herbs should steep in your simple syrup mixture (just equal parts sugar and water) until you reach your desired flavor - this will take up to 30 minutes. You can use the syrup with anything from cocktails to nonalcoholic drinks (think sparkling water!) and even desserts. As a time saver, make your herbal syrup in advance. Syrups will last for about 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator.
- The strength of the flavor of your syrup depends on the herb, so select herbs that are pleasant to your palate. Common herbs that are paired with cocktails include:
Infused Cranberry Sage Syrup
1 bag cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1 1/2 c. sugar
15-20 fresh sage leaves
1 c water
Puree cranberries and 1/2 cup sugar (or to desired sweetness). Add cranberry puree, sage, remaining 1 cup sugar and water to a small saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil. Turn to low and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Once the liquid has cooled, strain. Add desired amount of syrup to bourbon, rye or gin, add ice, shake, pour and garnish with a sage leaf. Voila!
Another great seasonal cocktail is my falljito. Yup, it’s just like a mojito, but with the flavors of fall front and center. In my video, I walk you through the steps to create this cocktail on your own. Give it a try and let me know what you think!