Friday, January 12, 2007

Grape Champagne Cocktails

It's Friday! That's certainly enough reason to celebrate with a good cocktail, right? It's also one week since our massive 13-courses dinner, where this was the first item on the menu, together with the parmesan shortbread I posted about the other day.

This also means that the kittens are one week old today! I'll take pictures later on, so check back tomorrow for Weekend Cat Blogging - I can assure you that there's a lot of cuteness coming.

Anyway. These cocktails are quite deceptive, and actually really strong. However, they taste of no alcohol at all, and I could easily have drank more than just the one glass. So be warned - this could get you drunk real fast! :)

It's a little finicky in that you have to prepare - so for Friday night cocktails, either do the grape mixture in the morning or the day before, I suppose. The orange-cinnamon sugar is absolutely delicious, and you'll have a lot leftover. Try that in your coffee - it's amazing. And a final note, you might want to soak your glasses afterwards, otherwise the sugar rim can be a bit hard to clean off...

Grape Champagne Cocktails
Serves 6

2 large oranges
125 ml (1/2 cup) sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
350 ml vodka
2,5 dl (1 cup) seedless grapes + 18 to decorate
150 ml grape juice
1 bottle (750 ml) of champagne or other sparkling wine (I used Bonnaire champagne)

Preheat the oven to 125°C. Finely grate the peel of the oranges, put that on a baking sheet and dry for about half an hour in the oven. It might take a little longer, but watch it so it doesn't burn. Let the peel cool, and mix with sugar and cinnamon. Mash together well. (I used a Flavour Shaker for this - and it worked out quite nicely.) Cover with plastic and set aside - this keeps for a long time if you have it in a tightly sealed jar. And save one orange for moistening the glasses!

Mix the vodka and the grapes in a jug, and mash the grapes well. (I used an immersion blender to crush them.) Add the grape juice, and chill until really cold. (Overnight is great.)

When your guests are on their way, moisten the rims of your glasses with the reserved orange, and dip in the flavored sugar. Thread the reserved 18 grapes on toothpicks (three on each) and put in the glasses.

Sieve the vodka grape mixture, and fill the glasses about half way up with this. Fill them all the way up with champagne, and serve right away.

Recipe in Swedish:
Champagnecocktail med druvor och vodka


Anonymous said...

Almost a shame to use regular champagne - but your drinks looks just great.

Anonymous said...

The coctails were great and quite strong, just like you wrote :-)

Anonymous said...

Oh my...those look good! Perfect for a Friday afternoon happy hour.

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