For all kinds of reasons, I’ve had a couple of humdinger weeks. Stuff has been going wrong. All kinds of stuff. Stuff that normally goes right. Stuff at work. Stuff at home. Even running – I’ve been limping through my runs. I just can’t get motivated.
And I’m having a series of cooking flops too. COOKING. The thing I always resort to in all times of duress – the thing that never lets me down. At least usually.
Yesterday I made a pair of rhubarb custard pies. I harvested and prepared the rhubarb and rolled out my own pastry. I made my standard recipe and cooked the pies exactly as per usual. I took them out of the oven – all puffed and gorgeous with deep golden brown pastry – and set them on the counter to cool. Twenty minutes later I came back in the kitchen and there they were. Flopped – concave – soggy, weepy-looking.
I felt kind of soggy and weepy too.
Then I remembered Berry Infused Vodka.
It takes a few days to infuse properly – but don’t let that let stop you. There are no hard and fast rules about early sampling. Use at your own discretion….
Wild Berry Infused Vodka
3 cups frozen mixed wild/organic berries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
750 ml of vodka (any vodka will do)
Bring the sugar and water to the boil, stirring and cooking until the sugar dissolves. Add the frozen berries (cut any really large ones in half) and add to the simple syrup solution. Cook for a minute longer. Remove from the heat and pour the berries and solution into a large glass jar. Add the vodka. Leave the vodka infusion for a few days in a spot out of the sunlight. The colour will begin to leach out of the berries. After 4 or 5 days – strain the infusion carefully removing the fruit and bottle the vodka. Refrigerate or freeze. Chuck the fruit. Or stir it into vanilla ice cream. It’s lethal.
Some serving suggestions:
Berry Infused Vodka Martini
1 oz berry infused vodka
1/2 oz Grand Marnier
lemon twist or fresh raspberry and ice
Berry Infused Vodka Lemonade
2 oz berry infused vodka
4 oz lemonade
ice and fresh mint