Gigi’s Peach and Bourbon Sangr

YIELDS | 1 Pitcher, about 6 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 10 MINS

COOK TIME | X MINS

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Fresh, juicy peaches, mixed with sweet nectar and bourbon make this cocktail especially light and refreshing with a kick from Kentucky Bourbon. This is a great transitional cocktail and once you make this recipe you may not go back to traditional sangria again.

INGREDIENTS

* 1 lb fresh yellow peaches, sliced, about 3-4 medium plus a few slices for garnish
* 10-12 sprigs fresh thyme
* 1/4 cup sugar or to taste, optional
* 1/2 cup peach liqueur or peach schnapps
* 1/4 cup bourbon
* 1 bottle light wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Rose.
* One cup peach nectar
* Club soda to top off.

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Mix all the ingredients together and let sit for at least 30 minutes to allow the thyme to infuse the mixture.
2. Pour into ice-filled glasses, top off with club soda.
3. Garnish with a slice of peach, a couple thyme sprigs, optional.

NOTES

Celery, Lemon and Green Grape Juice

YIELDS | 4 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 5 MINS

COOK TIME | 0 MINS

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Feeling the need to detox? Try this cooler made from celery, lemon and green grapes to do the trick.Celery contains essential vitamins and minerals including folate, vitamin B6, potassium, vitamin K, and vitamin C. It is also packed with antioxidants and enzymes, Lemon purifies and grapes contain contain a chemical compound called resveratrol. Studies have shown that resveratrol can help your body metabolize fatty acids, increase your energy level, and improve your overall metabolism, all of which can help with weight loss.

INGREDIENTS

* 2 cups celery, coarsely chopped about 4-5 stalks

* 1 lemon, peeled, halved with seeds removed

* 1 cup green grapes, halved

* 1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped

* Kosher salt


INSTRUCTIONS

1. Add celery, lemon, grapes, cucumber and 1 cup cold filtered water to a high speed blender and process until smooth, about 30 seconds.
2. Strain liquid into a container and refrigerate for an hour or longer. Serve ice cold with a small pinch kosher salt and enjoy.

NOTES

Make ice cubes from this elixir and pop into sparkling water for a refreshing drink and beautiful presentation.

Cucumber and Fennel Cooler & Cocktail

YIELDS | 4 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 10 MINS

COOK TIME | 10 MINS

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One sip of this refreshing elixir and you’ll feel like you just stepped into a fresh, breezy spa. I make this light cocktail often during the warm summer months when fresh cucumbers are abundant. This delicious concoction is equally as yummy with or without the spirits. Bonus: You can make the fennel simple syrup days in advance and store it in the refrigerator.

INGREDIENTS

* 1/2 cup sugar
* 1/2 cup filtered water
* 2 tbsp fennel seeds
* 5 mini seedless cucumbers, chopped, plus 1 cucumber thinly sliced for garnish
* 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice, plus 4 slices lemon for garnish
* 1 cup gin,
* Club soda
* Ice
* High speed blender or food processor

INSTRUCTIONS

1. In a small saucepan, over medium heat, bring the water, sugar, fennel seeds and lemon juice to a simmer and stir until the sugar dissolves.

2.Turn the stove off and let the mixture steep for 10-15 minutes. Strain into a high speed blender. Discard fennel seeds.

3.Add the chopped cucumbers to the blender and purée for 10-15 seconds or until the mixture is well combined. Strain into a measuring cup.

4.Fill 4 rocks glasses with ice.

5.Divide the cooled fennel cucumber syrup among 4 glasses and add 2 oz gin, if using, and top with club soda. Garnish with a sprig of mint and slices of cucumber and lemon.

NOTES

Watermelon and Cucumber Slushy

YIELDS | 4 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 10 minutes plus freezing time

COOK TIME | 0 MINS

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Luscious, watermelon and cucumber, slushy and/or very EASY adult beverage. Full of juicy watermelon, fresh cucumber lime and mint. No extra sugar but big on taste!

INGREDIENTS

* 6 fresh mint sprigs
* 1 medium, hothouse cucumber, peeled and chopped, Reserve a few slices for garnish
* 4 cups frozen watermelon chunks
* 1/4 cups fresh lime juice
* 3/4 or more vodka, optional

INSTRUCTIONS

1. In a high speed blender, add the cucumber, vodka if using, lime juice and frozen watermelon chucks and blend about 10-20 seconds or until it reaches the desired consistency. 


2. Pour into cocktail glasses and garnish with mint sprigs and cucumber slice. If using vodka, you may want to add additional ice as the slushy may melt a little quicker than if not using alcohol.

NOTES

Happy Drinking!

Winter Spiced Martini

YIELDS | 2 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 5 MINS

COOK TIME | 30 MINS

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This is a warm and soothing cocktail spiked with loads of cinnamon, cloves, allspice and garnished with crystallized ginger. It will warm you up quickly on a cold day and tastes wonderful as a non alcoholic spritzer too. The spiced simple syrup is easy to make and great to have on hand for your next holiday gathering. Make a few batches and put into pretty bottles to give as a gifts.

INGREDIENTS

Winter Spiced Simple Syrup (makes approximately 1 1/2 cups)

* 1 cup sugar
* 1 cup water
* 3 cinnamon sticks
* 2 cloves
* 2 allspice berries
* 1 Star Anise
* 1 strip clementine zest

Winter Spiced Martini or Bourbon

* 2 oz Winter spiced simple syrup
* 4 oz vodka or bourbon
* 1 tablespoon lemon juice
* Crystallized ginger and or cinnamon stick for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS

For the simple syrup
Bring all ingredients to a boil in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally until sugar has dissolved, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and allow to cool completely, about 30-45 minutes.
Strain into a jar with a tight fitting lid such as a canning jar and store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or freeze into cubes to use later.

For the Martini
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
Add all the ingredients to the shaker and shake well, strain into pretty glasses and garnish with crystallized ginger and or cinnamon stick.

NOTES

Ginger and Jalapeño Simple Syrup

YIELDS | 8 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 5 MINS

COOK TIME | 30 steeping MINS

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Whip up a batch of this elixir and mix with almost any liqueur or non at all and top with a little seltzer and garnish with lime and Jalapeño slices.

INGREDIENTS

• 1-3/4 cups sugar
• 1-3/4 cups water 10
• 1-8-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
• 1 large jalapeños, halved and seeded

INSTRUCTIONS

1. In a small saucepan, combine all of the ingredients and bring to a boil over moderately high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
2. Once the sugar is dissolved, simmer for 2-3 minutes remove the pan from the heat and let steep for 30 minutes.
3. Strain the syrup, let cool and refrigerate, covered, for up to 2 weeks or freeze in ice cube trays.

NOTES

See Ginger, Jalapeño Tequila Spritzer for a refreshing and light cocktail.