As winter has had us in a tight grip(and I’ll continue moaning until the lilacs blossom OK?) I’m still in my big ol’ coat, wrapped in a woolly scarf and thinking about warm drinks. But I made an effort to make something more interesting when the sun came out for a few hours.
Jasmine green tea is not my usual tea of choice but I do like it, and make sure to have some on hand for when mood takes me there. With jasmine green tea it is the case that you get what you pay for; I splurge and buy “jasmine pearls” which is the whole tea leaf rolled into a small pearl. Pricey to buy but it has the most intense jasmine flavor which is what I’m after and I’ve found that they do stretch a long way; several brewing of the same leaves turn out just fine. This time I used them as a base for cocktails. The thing to remember with green tea is to not use boiling water when brewing, that’s when you get that bitterness. 70 degrees Celsius at most.
Jasmine Martinis with tea-infused dry vermouth;
This is very easy, all you need to do is plan ahead; Pour the amount of dry vermouth that you want to infuse in a jar, add a reasonable amount of jasmin green tea,I’d say a pinch per deciliter, screw on the lid,let it infuse for 3-5 hours and then filter the vermouth. Then make Martinis as usual. I will also say that this vermouth is equally wonderful in a Negroni.
All vermouth should be kept in the fridge BTW.
White Nixons with cold jasmine green tea;
I got the recipe for this from Martha Stewart magazine actually, from an article focusing on tea-purveyor Bellocq that sell very exclusive tea in Brooklyn. I don’t have access to their teas but the ideas for food and drink in that spread were noted. I think this drink was originally made with lemon vodka, not a bad idea, but I use gin bc. I never have lemon vodka around. Here I made it into a shaken cocktail but in the heat of summer its wonderful as a long drink with more green tea and loads of ice.
White nixon; yields one cocktail
5 cl gin
2 cl cold jasmin green tea
2 cl pink grapefruit juice
1 cl ginger syrup (from a jar of gingembre confit is fine. Don’t know what it’s called in english)
Either shake the ingredients in an ice-filled shaker and serve in a coupette or pour them into a tumbler filled with ice. Using pink grapefruit juice makes all the difference as the colour is so inviting, that pink blush. Exclude the gin and add a bit more ginger syrup and you have a very nice non-alcoholic cocktail that I like to call “The dim sum-Sunday”
G&T with jasmin-syrup;
According to bartenders here G&T:s are over. Over. O.V.E.R. Whatevs boys. Don’t care about your hip cocktails. However I discovered a long time ago that adding a little something sweet, like ginger syrup or elderflower liqueur, improves it. This time I went with a green tea syrup and as the jasmin goes so well with the gin, it turned out nice. Stuck to Schweppes, a fancier tonic would just overpower the jasmine I think.
Jasmin green tea syrup;
Pour 1 dl of boiling water over 2 dl of caster sugar placed in a heatproof bowl. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Add 2 pinches of green tea/10 jasmine pearls and let steep until cool. Filter the tea(or just fish out the leafs if using pearls, they really are a charm to work with)
Add 1 to 1,5 cl of the syrup when making a G&T and then proceed as you normally would. Garnish with a grapefruit peel.
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