The year is coming to a close and the biggest party of the year is still to come – New Year’s Eve! It’s time to celebrate the old and ring in the new. And… let’s just say this usually involves at least a cocktail or two.
I have some great ways to give you a good start for the New Year, even if you do over-indulge a bit the night before.
My go-to cure is my Hangover Helper. Just empty a packet of Emergen-C (I like orange or raspberry) into a juice glass and add a little vodka – or gin, a dash of bitters, and soda water then top with a few drops of olive oil. Yep, that’s right – drink up!
New Year’s Day entertaining? A Bloody Mary Bar for brunch will definitely help with that headache – with a little hair of the dog!
When I was a kid, summer was full of freedom, adventures, and of course ICE CREAM! I can still hear the catchy jingle of the ice cream truck slowly turning the corner to go down my street.
Today, the market is full of classic and snazzy ice creams, gelatos, custards, and frozen yogurt treats. But the classics are always a favorite.
Take the ice cream sandwich as an example. Creamy, soft ice cream sandwiched between a pair of homemade cookies… now, that’s what I call heaven! With so many great ice creams on the market it’s easy to “sandwich” your own. How about Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Garcia – with chunks of chocolate and cherries folded into rich vanilla bean ice cream. Sandwich between Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies with dried cherries and almonds – yes, please! Or Gingersnaps with Summery Local Peach Ice Cream – mmmm!
And we can’t forget the ice cream float! The classic vanilla ice cream and root beer is always a favorite, but how about something different? Use locally made soda and ice cream with new flavors to take this to a whole new level! I like not-too sweet Vanilla Bean DRY Soda so d’lish when poured atop a big scoop of Molly Moon’s Honey Lavender ice cream. Now that’s a local float!
When fresh, juicy peaches appear at the local markets, you know summer has finally arrived. Eat them raw, blend them in a cocktail, chop them up for salsa; any way to eat a peach is fine by me.
Swirl them into yogurt or chop them up and add them to a bright summer salad – or slice them thin and serve atop crostini spread with herbed goat cheese.
Blushing Pickled Peaches are easy to make and so tasty served alongside grilled pork chops.
But – have you ever had Grilled Peaches? If not, they should go on your need-to-try list! Just cut them in half, remove the pit, drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt. Then grill on each side until nicely marked and just tender – yum! A great combination of sweet and smokey – perfect to cozy up with a juicy chicken breast or d’lish over vanilla ice cream with a drizzle of salted caramel.
And of course…peaches are perfect to shake in a summer cocktail like in my Peachy Mojito with fresh garden mint! –Kathy
Blushing Pickled Peaches
Be sure to use a freestone variety of peach for this recipe such as Elberta or Hale. Great with grilled ham steaks and poultry, and especially fantastic with thinly sliced prosciutto, crusty French bread and a glass of Northwest Pinot Gris.
Makes 1 quart
5 – 6 large ripe peaches, peeled, pitted and halved, about 2 – 2 1/4 lbs.
2 1/2-inch piece of fresh ginger cut into 1/4-inch slices (2 oz wt.)
3 cloves of garlic, peeled
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp kosher salt or uniodized salt
1/2 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
Tightly pack the peach halves, alternating with the ginger and garlic, into a clean quart jar.
Meanwhile, in a small, non-reactive saucepan bring the remaining ingredients to a quick boil over high heat. Immediately remove from heat and ladle over the peaches, making sure to cover them and transferring all the spices to the peaches.
Cover tightly and let cool to room temperature. Immediately after cooling, refrigerate peaches. Chill the pickled peaches for 2 – 3 days before using them. They’ll keep 4 weeks in the refrigerator.
2 sprigs of fresh mint
2 oz silver rum
1 oz lime juice
1 oz Simple Syrup*
1/2 oz peach puree
1 oz soda water
Garnish: lime wedge on cocktail pick
Tear mint sprigs and drop into a pint mixing glass. Measure in rum, lime juice, simple syrup, and peach puree. Fill glass full with ice, then cap and shake vigorously. Uncap then add a dash of soda water to the tin. Pour drink into a tall glass. Garnish with a lime wedge on a pick.
*To make Simple Syrup: bring equal parts water and sugar to a quick boil, immediately remove from heat. Cool and store at room temp for up to 2 weeks.
Welcome to the brand newDishing with Kathy Casey – The Newsletter! I can’t wait to share all of my tasty adventures with you; read on to see what I’ve been up to, check out some great recipes, and enjoy all things d’lish!
What is the coolest thing you’ve seen around the beverage world? The Drink Nation Experiment wants to know! Facebook, Tweet, and Instagram anything you see or sip that is cool, unique and cutting edge in the land of beverage. Great cocktails, beers, cider, a cool coffee presentation, a fantastic non-alcoholic beverage –share, tag, and post it!
This 6-month social media experiment will showcase the best of the best in the world of beverage.
The Top 40 trends and findings will be presented at this year’s Flavor Experience conference by Beam, Inc.’s resident Mixologist Philip Raimondo and myself – and then posted on the Drink Nation Experiment Facebook page.
So let us know what you’re seeing out there in your travels, at your favorite bar, or restaurant! From Seattle to Miami …Dubai to Peru, we look forward to virtually sipping your next drink with you!
Time has been zipping by and 2014 has been off to a great start! Since my last Newsletter, it’s been non-stop busy with traveling. Here’s a peek of what my team and I have been up to lately and what’s coming up.
In the early 90’s I wrote the Northwest Table Cookbook and Chef Greg Higgins penned the Oregon chapter. He was the chef at the Heathman Hotel way back when and the hotel became my home base for shooting the Oregon companion videos for PBS. Fast forward about 12 years – we did a new cocktail menu and I was thrilled to be asked to come back and do new cocktails to go with Chef Michael Stanton‘s NW local-French inspired menu. It was so fun to create cocktails to compliment his menu and cooking style.
Liquid Kitchen’s Keith Waldbauer and I recently headed to Portland to shake up our new cocktails at a press party featuring the new menu. To go with the Heathman’s famed High Tea service, we created the Tea Court Lounge Punch with Fonté Earl Grey Tea Spiced Syrup, rum, cognac, and fresh juices – topped with and Angostura Foam. Another party favorite was the Vineyard Margarita.
It was great to meet so many cool Portland bloggers – and their photos of the event were amazing! I hope that you’ll stop by the Heathman Restaurant & Bar on your next trip to Portland!
After a winter in Seattle, I enjoyed heading to Bermuda with Associate Mixologist Dänny Ronen to implement a new bar menu at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess. Look at the beautiful view from my room!
It is always great to meet new bartenders and learn about local spirits. Yes, the local rums are amazing there.
Fairmont Hamilton Princess’
Cavon and Curtis taking a quick photo break after Liquid Kitchen training
The local fish chowder (also the national dish) is served with a caddy of dark rum and sherry pepper sauce to customize your soup. Served with a corn Johnny cake – this was definitely a go-to lunch. The preparation of this soup is very old school, and a LOT of technique goes into making it – yum!
Bermuda Fish Chowder – amazing flavor!
Dänny and my Sous Chef Jason Anderson, and I are headed back to Bermuda in the next couple of weeks to open the new 1609 Bar & Restaurant – the new cocktail menu is amazing! Make sure to follow me on Twitter @KathyCaseyChef for sneak peeks and updates.
The VIBE Conference in Las Vegas!
After a quick breather at home, the Liquid Kitchen team (Dänny, Heather, Jason, and I) flew down to Las Vegas… for the annual VIBE Conference! During the Cameo Party, we shook up a South Seas cocktail at the Monin & William Grant booth with fellow mixologist Charlotte Voisey. Fresh Thai basil, Monin South Seas syrup, Sun Orchard grapefruit and lime juices, Reyka Vodka & Milagro Silver Tequila – served over large format ice cubes and topped with a sprinkle of Liquid Kitchen Edible Cocktail Silver.
The following morning I led a panel on Cocktails on Tap 2.0 (Tapped, Bottled and Pre-Mixed) Seminar with Dänny and guest speakers Brandon Wise from Portland’s Imperial PDX and Matthew Meidinger from the Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant Group). We had a huge attendance and guests sampled a few of our cocktails, including my Bottled Front Porch Cooler. It is exciting to see more and more interest in this growing trend!
… well I’m sure there are some other great cocktails out there but we are thrilled that SavoirThere.com ‘s World Food Awards picked the Luxury Sling as their Favorite Cocktail of 2013. Liquid Kitchen created this Sling for the Fairmont Makati (Philippines) and it continues to be blog and buzz worthy!
Make sure to download the Chef’s Feed app – a great resource for top rated chef recommended restaurants and foods! Check out some of my hot spots like the Bruce Lee Roll from Shiku Sushi and the “Oil Soup” from Volterra Restaurant. And for laughs, check out their YouTube playlist Chefs Read Bad Reviews – LOVE IT!!
Women Stars of Food & Wine
Pacific Northwest’s best female chefs, tastemakers, winemakers, and sommeliers came together for tasty a fundraiser for the Women’s Funding Alliance! This event was held at the amazing Columbia Tower Club, where my team and I shook up the signature cocktail for the afternoon.
I am so honored to be a judge this year for this teen writing contest – an annual event sponsored by Gilda’s Club – Seattle and open to any Washington teens in grades 9 through 12, who has been touched by cancer. Keep your eye on their website for the winning essay. I can’t express how it touched my heart to read these stories….Truly honored.
So make sure to Save the Date: Tuesday, May 20 and celebrate cancer survivorship with the 17th Annual Surviving with Style Fashion Show & Luncheon event! All models are cancer survivors with extraordinary stories and will be fitted with clothing provided by local boutiques. Organized by Gilda’s Club Seattle, make sure to get your tickets soon!
And to toast in spring here is one of my new favorite cocktails – perfect for a brunch celebration (think Mother’s Day) using one of my favorite new cocktail methods – Flash Blending!
Strawberry Silver Gin Fizz This frothy drink is delicious to serve for brunch. The flash blending of the drink with egg whites makes it extra frothy, and quick and easy to serve to a crowd. You can pre-batch the strawberries, sugar, gin, lemon, and egg white and keep refrigerated until ready to blend with the ice.
Photo by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®.
Makes 4 – 6 servings
3/4 cup sliced strawberries
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp. powdered sugar
1 cup gin (or substitute vodka)
6 Tbsp. (3 oz) freshly squeezed Sunkist® lemon juice
In a large glass measuring cup combine the strawberries and the powdered sugar. Let sit for 10 minutes.
Combine the macerated strawberries, gin, lemon juice, egg whites and ice in a high powered blender. Blend on high speed until smooth and all ice has been blended in. Add soda water to blender. Divide fizz between chilled glasses. Garnish with strawberries and lemon twists.
Beer cocktails are defiantly all the rage these days and especially d’lish when made with our amazing local craft beers. If you’re hosting a fiesta, a beer based punch is a great option to make bartending a breeze! Try my recipe for Hoppy Melon Rita Punch – Fremont Summer Solstice Ale, fresh citrus, diced watermelon, and tequila – Yum!
And if you’re looking for an alternative to the classic margarita, how about a chelada! Originating over 75 years ago, this classic is now a drink staple. Made with Mexican beer, the juice of one lime, and served over ice in a salt rimmed glass. Refreshing!
Michelada is another variation with added spices, sauces, and peppers. Some people also make it with a splash of tomato juice, too.
Happy Cinco de Mayo! –Kathy
Photo by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®
Hoppy Melon Rita Punch
Makes 16 – 20 servings
zest of 2 limes (zest before squeezing for juice)
1 cup sugar
1 bottle (750 ml) silver tequila
1 cup fresh lime juice
1 cup Ruby Grapefruit Juice Cocktail
1 cup fresh orange juice
2 cups diced fresh watermelon
2 (12 ounce) bottles Fremont Summer Solstice Ale
Garnish: fresh watermelon wedges
In a large punch bowl (or large container such as a stock pot or pitcher) combine the lime zest, sugar, tequila, juices, and watermelon. Stir to combine well. (At this point you can refrigerate the punch for service up to 3 days in advance). Present in a large punch bowl. Add ale right before serving. Serve over ice in punch cups, or fun margarita glasses.
Make sure to mark your calendars and buy your tickets for this hot event on Sunday, February 9th from 2:00pm – 5:00pm in Seattle’s Columbia Tower Club – featuring the Northwest’s best tastemakers: chefs, winemakers, and sommeliers! Proceeds of this event will go on to support the Women’s Funding Alliance.
I’m looking forward to shaking up the signature cocktail for the event…my libacious Rosemary Mandarin Sparkle! Hope to see you there! -Kathy
Rosemary Mandarin Sparkle
Fresh rosemary adds an herbal note to this festive cocktail. You can also make a cocktail pre-mix with the vodka, lemon and Honey Syrup then just shake 3 oz with the rosemary and mandarin, strain and top with champagne bubbles. For a demo on how to make this drink and more imbibing recipes and ideas, check out this episode of Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen!
Makes 1 drink
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1/2 – 1/4 mandarin or clementine depending upon size
1 1/2 oz Crater Lake Vodka
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz Honey Syrup*
1 oz Michelle Brut Champagne
Garnish: small sprig of rosemary
Bend rosemary sprig and drop into mixer glass. Squeeze and drop in Mandarin.
Measure in the vodka, lemon and honey syrup. Fill with ice, then cap and shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Add a splash of champagne. Garnish with rosemary.
*To make Honey Syrup: combine 3/4 cup local honey with 1/2 cup hot water. Stir to dissolve. Store refrigerated.
Sparkling Cocktail Pre-Mix
Makes 20 ounces or about 6 – 7 cocktails
1 1/2 cups vodka
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup Honey Syrup*
This week on Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen®, I shake up a Gold Martini! The Lemon & Black Peppercorn-Infused Vermouth is simple to make and has a wonderful golden hue once it’s finished infusing. This with Stoli Elit Vodka makes for a perfect martini! For added bling bling, I love to garnish with a dusting of Liquid Kitchen Cocktail Gold!
Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves… It’s time to spice it up! We love these spices in tasty cookies, cakes, and muffins. And there are even more dishes out there ready for that hit of warm spice pizazz!
One of my favorite and somewhat un-sung spices is the cardamom seed. This flavorfully potent spice is native to India, but its flavor and use has spread throughout the world, from Scandinavian to Middle Eastern cuisine.
Cardamom adds a sassy flavor to my Spiced Squash Bisque. The aromatic spices combine well with the flavor of sweet winter squash making this soup a great cold weather dish.
Other favorite spices that I love are allspice and cloves, so great in spiced shortbread cookies, stews – and I especially love them infused in my recipe for Spiced Red Vermouth … perfect in a Manhattan!!
Rubs are another great way to incorporate new and unique spices into your meal. There are so many great pre-made options available like my Fragrant Star Anise Rub. It’s an excellent way to add an exotic flair to a roasted pork or chicken.
If you like to experiment with creating your own rubs, check out the bulk spice section at your neighborhood grocer, or head on over to Pike Place Market’s World Spice shop to pick out what you want. World Spice has tons of loose spices, and you can buy just what you need, whether it’s a pinch or a squiggle. You can also find spices online from BulkFoods.com to Amazon.
One last hint: a coffee grinder is excellent for grinding your own spices. Just be sure that you keep one for solely that purpose… the star anise “scented” coffee at my house was not a big hit!
So remember, a little bit of spice can go a long ways in bringing out your dish’s flavor! -Kathy
Spiced Squash Bisque
Organic or homegrown squash is preferable to use for this recipe because it creates a much more pronounced and sweet flavor. I like to use hubbard, Danish, or butternut squash, or a combination. Make the Crispy Seeds while the soup is cooking.
Makes 6 starter servings
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced onion
4 1/2 cups (about 1 1/2 pounds) peeled, seeded, and cubed winter squash (any type of sweet squash or pumpkin combination may be used; reserve 1/4 cup of seeds for Crispy Seeds)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, finely crushed
1 teaspoon cardamom seeds, finely crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 teaspoons salt (more or less depending upon whether you are using a homemade stock)
3 cups chicken broth
3/4 cup sour cream
Salt to taste
1/4 cup seeds from squash
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
In a large heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add squash, garlic, spices, bay leaf, and salt. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat, partially cover the pan, and simmer for approximately 15 to 20 minutes, or until the squash is very tender.
Meanwhile, make the Crispy Seeds: preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Rinse seeds under cold water to remove any squash flesh or strings. Drain well and measure. Place in a bowl and toss with the olive oil. In a small bowl, combine cumin, sugar, and salt and sprinkle over the seeds. Toss well and spread seeds on a nonstick baking sheet. Roast for 8 to 10 minutes, or until crispy and toasted.
Remove bisque from heat. Remove and discard bay leaf. In a blender or food processor, carefully purée the hot soup in small batches with the sour cream. (Be careful not to make your batches too large, since the soup is very hot.) Taste for seasoning and add salt as needed, especially if using homemade broth. Pour the puréed soup back into the pan and keep warm.
Divide the soup among warmed soup bowls. Sprinkle each serving with about 2 teaspoons Crispy Seeds.
For a vegetarian version: substitute vegetable stock for the chicken stock.
For a fun and impressive presentation, thin out a small portion of sour cream with milk or cream until it is a “squeezable” consistency and put in a squirt bottle. Swirl the top of each serving with the sour cream.