It really hasn’t felt much like winter this year. Yeah, every now and then it’s time to bundle up, but I am pretty certain I’ve spent most of the season in a light jacket. The only tell tale sign seems to be the abundance of citrus. Seriously, for the first time EVER I got my hands on blood oranges. I was so excited to find a bag of these beautiful fruits at Target sitting alongside the lemons, limes, and navels, and clementines. Just how red would they be? Would they be bitter like grapefruit? Sweet like clementines? Somewhere in the middle?
The first thing I did when I got home was consult the Flavor Bible, which described the blood orange as “sour-sweet” (For reference, clementines are “sweet, sour” and grapefruit is “sour”). I looked at the list of recommended complimentary flavors and thought, “I think we can add to this.” Next, it was time to taste! Very juicy and very, very red! I had to be careful not to get the juice on myself. As you can tell from the pictures, pretty sure this stuff stains! Now for the flavor! Tart and more reminiscent of grapefruit than orange, but with a faint hint of sweetness. To tame that grapefruit flavor without destroying it’s citrus core I immediately thought of basil for its clean sweetness and vanilla for its creamy sweetness! And et voila, this cocktail was born!
Blood Orange and Basil Cocktail
- 2 oz Vanilla Vodka
- 3 oz Blood Orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 1/4 cup Basil leaves
- 1 tbsp sugar
- Place basil leaves in a cocktail shaker. With the end of a wooden spoon or end of a wooden rolling pin, smash the herb (like you would do to mint when you make a mojito).
- Add sugar and mash again, then add ice to the shaker.
- Pour the vodka and the Blood Orange juice into the shaker. Close and shake until the shaker has a nice ice cold frost.
- Pour into a martini glass and cheers!