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iced green tea

iced green teaCold, nonalcoholic iced drinks are always welcomed on a hot, humid day and there’s a variety to satisfy every palate.  Iced tea drinks have been around since the early 1900’s.  When we lived in Asia, bubble tea was all the rage.  I tried it, heck I’ll try anything once!  The tea is infused with crushed fruit or milk (or combo of both!) and chewy tapioca balls are added.  It’s an acquired taste but can be nice if the right crushed fruit combination is achieved.  Thai iced tea is another cold drink I also tried when we lived in Bangkok.  It’s a combination of black tea mixed with two types of milk.  Continue Reading →

Margarita – a classic cocktail

margaritaLonger days and warmer weather is finally being felt in the Maritimes.  The thought of wearing a light jacket and shoes instead of a winter coat and boots is a pleasure!  The sun was out in full force yesterday warming my face and allowing me to believe the nasty winter we endured is a thing of the past.  Spring, yes it might be here in theory, was off to a rocky start but yesterday erased any ill thoughts I had and to celebrate, I made this classic summer cocktail – a Margarita.  Continue Reading →

Homemade Limoncello

Easy To Make LimoncelloThis recipe is 4 years in the making! When we lived in Bangkok, we heard about a new Italian restaurant that had recently opened down the street from where we lived. Yay! Eager to sample the menu Mr S. and I made our way there. OPUS Wine Bar was open only a few days when we arrived.  We were warmly greeted by Alex Morabito (designer and manager of OPUS) and were then offered a glass of Prosecco (complimentary I might add) while we waited for our table to become available. That icebreaker was all we needed and the evening was off to a wonderful start.  Continue Reading →

Rhubarb Cordial

rhubarb cordial by The Culinary ChaseCordials are fruit-based concentrated drinks that are diluted with water before being consumed.  Homemade versions are easy to make and don’t have any additives like the commercial brands do.  Lemon, lime, orange, raspberry and elderflower are some of the popular ones.  Rhubarb cordial is my favorite.  If you’re lucky enough to have a rhubarb patch in your backyard or access to one, you’ll have it all throughout summer.  Rhubarb cordial has a gorgeous pink color and looks fab in drinks.  Try a splash of it in the bottom of a champagne flute topped with champagne or prosecco or mixed with tonic water, vodka and ice.   Serve this at your next soirée.

By the way, I have some exciting news to share with you. A few weeks ago I was contacted by AOL’s Kitchen Daily Network inviting me to join their contributor network and today it was made official.  I am stoked to announce I am now part of the Kitchen Daily Canada family!  Raise a glass of rhubarb cordial and view all the cool food team contributors here.  Cheers!

rhubarb stalks10 stalks rhubarb, roughly chopped
3 cups water
juice of 1 lemon
2 cups sugar
peel of 1 lemon, removed with a vegetable peeler
2 or 3 star anise (optional)

rhubarbIn a saucepan, place rhubarb, water, star anise and lemon peel.  Simmer for 20 minutes or until rhubarb becomes very soft and falling apart. Skim off any foam. Remove from heat, strain and discard the pulp. Pour rhubarb juice back into saucepan and add sugar and lemon juice. Stir to dissolve sugar and bring to a boil for 1 minute, remove from heat and cool. Keep refrigerated. Serve 1 part cordial with 3 parts still or sparkling water and plenty of ice.

rhubarb cordialThe Culinary Chase’s Note: This will keep up to a week in the fridge but you can add citric acid (a natural preserver) to extend the shelf life of the cordial.  A lovely drink to stay cool during the heat of the summer.  Enjoy!