Lychee Cocktail

 

Lychee Cocktail

For 6 small cocktails

–          Canned Lychees on light syrup (ca 500gr total weight)

–          250 gram frozen red fruit

–          1 tblsp chopped mint

–          150 ml vodka

–          Optional: crushed ice

Keep 6 lychees aside and poor the rest into the blender. Mix the fruits and syrup on the maximum speed until mushy.

Add the frozen fruits, mint and vodka, mix again shortly.

Put the lychees on a cocktail picker and place them in the glasses.

If you want to add crushes ice, do this just before serving. Poor the drink into the glasses and serve.

Cheers!  To Spring!

Summer Melon Cocktail

Ingredients

1 cup of water

½ cup of sugar

1 teaspoon pomegranate molasses

¼ honey melon

6 mint leaves

Combine the water, sugar and molasses in a sauce pan. Warm until the sugar is dissolved and set aside to cool down.

Make the melon into puree and add it to the syrup. Cut the mint leaves small and stir them into the mixture as well.

Put it in the freezer and try to stir after half an hour and after an hour.

Wait until the sorbet freeze. Put some of the half frozen or frozen sorbet in a glass, pour a little rum on it and serve with a little spoon.

Proost!

Naxos, Greece!

If there is a heaven I hope it looks like Naxos.

It was a long way to get there, three and a half hour by plain (just a day before the eruption in Iceland) an hour by bus and six hours by boat but all uncomfort is forgotten as soon as you set foot on the island. It’s a nice chaos when the people, cars, trucks who go off the boat meet the ones who try to get on in the middle. It seems so unorganized but somehow it works so who cares. We arrived at night and were welcomed by the lights of the city and masses of nightshades. Our host dropped us of at our little apartment with view to the sea and a little island with a massive ancient doorpost just before the coast, and invited us for a coffee in the morning.

The view from our apartment

Every island has its own specialties and Naxos is famous for its potatoes (of which they order the baby potatoes to grow with from Holland), it’s citron liquor, wild oregano, sausages.

our breakfast….

Unfortunately I was to early for the figs, the fig trees grow absolutely everywhere on the island but the fruits were not yet ripe. The island is maybe not famous for it’s bread but compared to Santorini or Athens it was quit special! The baker sold it to me with the dough dried on his hands, if I would have been more awake I maybe had remembered to ask which flour he used. I went to the bakery and cheese shop, vegetable shop every morning to get us breakfast which we ate in the sun in front of our apartment.

The Greeks are very nice hosts and they give something every time you  make an order. Is it not a little bowl of chips next to your ouzo or a glass of water next to your coffee then it is raki or a dessert at the end of the meal.

It doesn’t take long to discover what the most famous drink in the country is…. It’s not ouzo, it’s frappe. Everywhere you look, either when people are sitting on a terrace or when they are working, they have a cold coffee close by. Every place sells it and even in the most deserted villages we visited you could count on the classic picture of some local old man sitting in the shade enjoying a frappe. It didn’t take my boyfriend long to adopt this habit, he blended right in.

Of course we brought some coffee with us and recreated the drink at home. We have been arguing about if the nestle instant coffee they sell in Greece has a special taste and is different from the one they sell in Holland. My boyfriend thinks its something special, I think it was just the sun that added the special flavor.

Frappe

nestle instant coffee

milk (optional)

sugar (optional)

Dissolve a tablespoon of coffee in half a cup of water, add half a cup of milk, some sugar to taste and mix it for a couple of minutes until it becomes creamy (best to use half full milk) add some ice cubes and a straw. I think it would also be nice to mix it all up in the blender including the ice cubes but I did not see this version in Greece.

If you, like me, have trouble to pick what you want to order from the menu because you want to try it all but your stomach is to small, order the mixed starter/mezzes. We did this in one restaurant and it was the best choice we could have made. In one try we got to taste, dolmas, keftedes, courgette cookies, squid, eggplant dip, tzatziki, salad and fried cheese. There was no room left for a second dish, the Greek like their portions big.

My heart cried when I had to leave the island I fell in love with it, it was such a relaxing and great stay but there was a boat waiting for us to bring us to Santorini.

We did learn from the previous trip that you better take a picnic if you want to eat something on the boat because Goody’s (the local Mc Donalds) isn’t exactly all that.

Caribbean Night

 

Sun Cocktail

I was completely free styling with this one but it immediately brought the sun back into the house.

1 part limocello

1 part white rum

1 part fresh lime juice

4 parts fruity aromatic white whine

Mix everything together, decorate with a slice of lime, clothes your eyes and taste the sun.

Salad with smoked chicken and yogurt

2 hands full Baby leaf salad

2 tomatoes

½ red onion

½ red capsicum

2 tablespoons Turkish yogurt

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 smoked chicken breast

1 garlic clove

1 tablespoon fresh coriander

1 tablespoon fresh parsley

1 peach

1 handful cashew nuts

Pepper and salt

Cut the chicken, onion, garlic, coriander and parsley small. Mix it together with the yogurt, lime juice, pepper and salt.

Cut the tomatoes and the peach, wash and dry the salad and mix it together. Put the chicken with yogurt in the middle of the salad and decorate with the nuts.

Bacon Rice

½ red onion

1 garlic clove

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

200 gram bacon in cubes

½ red capsicum

1 carrot

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 stock cube

1 cup brown rice

Water

Pepper salt

Cut the onion, garlic, carrot and capsicum. Warm oil in a deep pan and sauté the onion and the carrot after a couple of minutes add the garlic and the capsicum, sauté for 5-7 more minutes on medium high fire. Add the bacon and the tomato paste and bake everything together for another 5 minutes. Keep stirring so the tomato won’t stick to the pan. Add the rice, cover it in the sauce and add the stock cube and water up to 2 cm above the rice. Cook until the rice is ready, check if there is enough water, if the water evaporated before the rice is done, add some more water.

Serve with nice Caribbean music and a sun cocktail.

 

If you can’t fall asleep and you need something to comfort you…

Chai Tea

 

Chai Tea

My chai tea involves,

1 teaspoon of black tea

1 cup of milk (I like regular or soy)

½ cinnamon stick

1 clove

2 cardamom pods

Pinch of nutmeg

A slice of fresh ginger

Heaps of honey, don’t be shy on the honey, chai tea should be sweet,

Slowly warm the milk with the tea and spices and leave to simmer until the tea has the desired concentration. Sift the mixture into a big mug and sweeten with honey.