Friday, May 13, 2011

Bitter is best for Lime-Ginger Coolers

It’s a warm afternoon, and you’re going to sit down, put your feet up and relax.
   What are you going to drink to celebrate this bit of time to yourself?
   A Lime-Ginger Cooler (click for the recipe from Martha Stewart Living magazine).
   These drinks are so very refreshing, with their bubbly mix of lime juice and club soda (the recipe calls for seltzer, but I prefer the taste of club soda.)
   This is the recipe that introduced my husband and I to the wonders of bitters, an alcoholic flavoring that’s added sparingly, like hot sauce, to drinks.
   Angostura is the most commonly available variety of bitters. It can be found in liquor stores, and, we were surprised to find, supermarkets too.
   Although it’s made from gentian, a bitter herb, Angostura bitters add a refreshing tang to these coolers.
   The recipe’s suggestion of using Rose’s brand sweetened concentrated lime juice is an excellent one – it definitely elevates the drink to a sublime (pun intended) experience.
   This bottled juice is labeled "Rose's Lime Cordial" and can be found in the supermarket right beside Rose’s grenadine, which is in turn found with mixes for alcoholic drinks and non-alcoholic beers and wines.
   The slices of peeled sliced ginger that are added to the drinks are not essential, however. We’ve left it out plenty of times when we didn’t have ginger around.
   To make a cooler, ice is put into an eight-ounce glass, then two dashes of bitters and two to three tablespoons of lime juice are added. This is topped with ½ cup of club soda and the drink stirred.
   Serve and celebrate spring.

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