Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! Whether you are hosting a feast in your own home or traveling out to family and friends, no Thanksgiving would be complete without some custom cocktails! How else would we survive this holiday??

DSC_0251 Partridge in a Pear Tree

This is one spicy and potent martini! The combination of spiced rum and cinnamon is sure to warm you right up.  Be sure to visit our Facebook page for instructions on making your own homemade pear vodka!

¾ oz pear vodka 

¾ oz spiced rum

¾ oz Amaretto (or other almond liqueur)

¾ oz vanilla vodka

1 oz pear nectar or juice**

pinch of ground cinnamon

Put all ingredients into an ice filled shaker and shake away. Pour into a chilled martini glass and enjoy.

*If you made home-made pear vodka, keep the pear you used for your infusion. Puree that pear and freeze it for a great substitution for pear nectar.

Autumn Apple

DSC_0221Recipe courtesy of Chef Paco Solano, Executive Chef & Owner of Solano’s Bistro in La Quinta, CA. Another libation with a cinnamon kick! This is Chef Solano’s take on an autumn mojito.

2 oz Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey

3 tbs diced apple (any variety works or substitute with 1.5 oz of apple juice)

¾ oz lemon juice

¾ oz honey or simple syrup

5 mint leaves

Club soda

In a shaker, muddle the whiskey, apple, lemon, syrup and mint leaves. Fill shaker with ice and shake away. Pour contents into an ice filled Collins glass and top with soda. Garnish with apple slices and mint.

Pumpkin Pie Martini

Thanksgiving isn’t complete without pumpkin pie! If you don’t have time to whip up a whole pie, these martinis can be made in a flash and are just as delicious.

1 tbs pumpkin puree

1 oz vanilla vodka

½ oz spiced rum

½ oz maple syrup

1 oz heavy cream

Pumpkin pie spice

Vanilla sugar or crushed graham crackers

Wet the edges of a martini glass and dip the rim in either vanilla sugar or crushed graham crackers. Put glass in freezer to chill while making martini.

Combine the puree, vodka, rum, syrup, heavy cream and a few sprinkles of pumpkin pie spice in a shaker with a few ice cubes. Really shake the contents with the ice to make the cream super frothy. Pour the mixture into the chilled martini glass. Put a final shake of pumpkin pie spice on the top of the martini.

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Please enjoy these cocktails responsibly (no matter what crazy relative you are seated next to!). From all of us at CLD, no matter where you are or whom you are celebrating with, we hope you have a fantastic Thanksgiving!

 

Halloween treats are not just for kids…

Ok, I cannot tell a lie: I get a little bit jealous of kids when Halloween comes around. Yes, it is somewhat acceptable for adults to dress up for the holiday; however, gorging on copious amounts of candy is not. To address this problem, I set out to make one of my favorite treats (whoopie pies), but with a Halloween twist. Whoopie pies are fantastic because they combine the soft chewiness of a cookie with frosting all in a compact little treat that’s perfect for parties (or just for yourself!)

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

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Makes about 18 cookies for 9 pies.

 1.5 cups all-purpose flour

0.5 teaspoon baking powder

0.5 teaspoon baking soda

0.5 teaspoon salt

0.5 teaspoon ground cloves

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

0.5 tablespoon ground ginger

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted & cooled

1.5 cups pumpkin puree, chilled

1 large egg

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or baking mat. Combine the first seven dry ingredients into a bowl and whisk to combine.In a separate bowl, whisk the butter and sugar together until well mixed. Add pumpkin puree and whisk again until well combined. Add the egg and vanilla and whisk again. Finally, slowly whisk in the flour mixture until well combined. Drop large tablespoons onto the baking sheet, keeping cookies about 1 inch apart. (A small ice cream scoop is a great tool for this step!). Smooth the tops of the cookies down with a finger. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the tops crack a bit. Transfer immediately to a wire rack to cool.

Filling options are endless! Cream cheese is a traditional favorite (Recipe), although chocolate is divine too (Recipe).

Chocolate Whoopie Pies

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Makes about 20 cookies for 10 pies.

 1.5 cups all purpose flour

½ cup unsweetened cocao powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup light brown sugar

1 large egg

1 cup unsweetened applesauce (helps cut down on sugar!)

Preheat oven to 375. In a bowl, whisk together the first 5 dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat again until smooth. With the mixer going, alternate adding small amounts of the flour mixture and then adding the applesauce, ending with the flour mixture. Mix everything until smooth, but not overly mixed. Drop large tablespoons onto a parchment lined baking sheet, keeping cookies about 2 inches apart. Bake until tops begin to crack, about 12 minutes. Transfer immediate to a wire rack to cool.

These are great with cream cheese filling or vanilla filling (recipe). Add orange food coloring or orange sprinkles for that Halloween twist.

And stay tuned for next week’s blog for a few delicious Halloween cocktails to go with these scrumptious treats!