Tag Archives: Cosmopolitans

Food for your 4th

27 Jun

Ah, the 4th of July. Fireworks, friends, family… and food. What can be better? Particularly when the 4th is on a Thursday, which means you will probably take off Friday, which means a four day weekend, which means four full days of fireworks, friends, family and food. So with out my usual prefatory rambling, I give you a plethora of food (and drink) for your holiday weekend.

DRINKS

* POMEGRANATE COSMOS

While I myself am partial to a Martini (click here!) or a Manhattan, I came up with this twist on a regular cosmopolitan for friends who like something a little less intense than either of my favorites but not as icky sweet as most “fru-fru” cocktails. These Pomegranate Cosmos are very tasty with a nice surprise kick from Limoncello. They are also gorgeous to present. I usually make a pitcher full, they go that quickly, but you can make them one at a time. Be sure to use fresh pomegranate juice. I once used juice from a jar and the result was terrible. Pom Wonderful is indeed wonderful and worth getting for this drink. 

Pomegranate Cosmopolitan

Pomegranate Cosmopolitan

How to:

Mix 1 part vodka with 2 parts Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice.  (I usually do half and half but let’s start easy.)

Add Roses Lime and Limoncello. If you are making a single drink, a healthy splash of each will do. If you are making a pitcher, a few healthy glugs of each is called for. Then add fresh lime juice following the same principle.

Stir it up and taste!  If you want it sweeter, add more Roses. If you want more of a kick, which people like, add limoncello. If you want it, um, stronger, add vodka. Stir and taste, stir and taste, it’s part of the fun of making this drink.

If you are making a pitcher, mix it early and stick it in the fridge for a couple of hours. Then you can pour right out of the pitcher… or go ahead and cocktail shaker each drink anyway to get it freezing cold and impress your guests. Definitely use a shaker for single servings. Don’t forget the fresh squeezed lime juice in the drink and a lime wedge as a garnish. Fresh pomegranate seeds are an excellent garnish in the drink, just three or four per cocktail.

MAIN DISHES

* GRILLED MEATS

Most people will be grilling, of course. I love grilling sausages and/or baby lamb chops. If you do lamb chops, find a rack of lamb you can cut into individual riblets. Cut them into the riblets then marinate them overnight in olive oil, salt and pepper, minced garlic, lemon juice and thyme. Then grill… not too much! Simplicity is always best and lamb chops/riblets prepared this way are divine. If you grill sausages, get a bunch of different kinds. And be sure to make aioli on the side. This is a must. If you watch the video below, you will see it can be ridiculously easy. I used to make aioli by hand, which takes a lot of effort but the result was worth it, so I suffered through it weekly. Now I get the same wonderful result in less than a minute. Check this video:

If you want to make something amazing that takes a little more effort than grilling sausages and lamb chops, make

* SUZANNE GOIN’S PORK BURGERS

I posted about these once before but they are so good, I am posting the recipe again because they are the perfect 4th of July food and because you simply must try these. I’ve made these pork burgers every 4th of July the last few years. They are amazing. I’ll say it a third time… these are amazing. Be sure to make the Romesco, it’s a must and I always add aioli to the burgers. Just make the damn aioli. The recipe for these burgers can be found at another wonderful food blog I encourage you to check out, Food Gal, written by the extremely talented Carolyn Jung:

Pork Burger Recipe

Burger

** Here is another good look at this amazing way to make Aioli.

SIDES

* WHEAT BERRY SALAD

Another favorite of mine. This Wheat Berry Salad is fresh, healthy, tastes great and is an excellent base for all kinds of variations. I love using wheat berries because even when fully cooked, wheat berries have a soft but hearty pop in your mouth.  You can easily substitute barley or farro, or any grain you like. If you are gluten-free, try quinoa… or just eliminate the grain and make a tossed vegetable salad. 

You can also substitute your own favorite herbs and vegetables. The recipe below is a guideline, though if you follow it you will get a wonderful salad. Note: I tend to do all my vegetables raw in this salad, but feel free to roast the peppers and asparagus first. Just not too much. You want a good crunch.

WheatBerry1

Wheat Berry Salad ingredients

How to:

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