Rhubarb & Elderflower Vodka Fizz

Rhubarb and Elderflower Vodka Fizz // Amy Elizabeth

This year, I am obsessed with rhubarb. How can you not be, living in Yorkshire? It’s locally grown and totally delicious – sweet, tart, everything that is good in the world. Plus, it’s a beautiful pink colour, which is a definite plus. You don’t get much of that in food. I received a beautiful bottle of Chase Rhubarb Vodka for Christmas, long before the rhubarb season started, and I’m pretty sure it’s my favourite alcohol ever. It’s gorgeous to drink neat over ice, but I was struggling with what else to do with it. I didn’t want to overpower the distinctive rhubarb flavour with other fruits or hide that pretty pink colour. This cocktail is the solution. 

Rhubarb and Elderflower Vodka Fizz // Amy Elizabeth

The delicate elderflower is the best complement to that sweet rhubarb, and the addition of the rhubarb syrup just amplifies the flavour to be totally irresistible. The perfect, pretty drink for your summer get-togethers. Perhaps for a baby-shower or sophisticated hen-do? You can use plain vodka if you don’t want to splash out on the rhubarb version (although it’s worth it, I assure you), or leave the alcohol out altogether for a refreshing mocktail. Just don’t forget the chevron straws – it’s not the same without them. 

Rhubarb and Elderflower Vodka Fizz // Amy Elizabeth

Rhubarb & Elderflower Fizz
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For the rhubarb syrup
  1. 350g rhubarb, chopped
  2. water
  3. 330g caster sugar
To make one cocktail
  1. 50ml rhubarb vodka (or ordinary vodka, if rhubarb flavoured is unavailable)
  2. 50ml rhubarb syrup
  3. sparkling elderflower
For the rhubarb syrup
  1. Place the rhubarb in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat. Cover and leave to simmer for 1 hour.
  2. Strain the rhubarb mixture into a bowl or jug, and discard the rhubarb. Pour the liquid back into the saucepan and stir in the sugar.
  3. Bring to a boil whilst whisking, until the sugar has all dissolved. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely. Transfer to a bottle or jug.
To make one cocktail
  1. Pour in a measure of rhubarb syrup and rhubarb vodka. Top up with sparkling elderflower to taste. Serve with a straw!
Amy Elizabeth http://amyliz.co.uk/

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Feels Like Home

Ugg Blog Post 1

I’m sure that I’m not the only one that feels the need to hibernate now that the clocks have gone back and the evenings are pitch black. Pub gardens and picnics in the park have been replaced with nights spend on the sofa, fleecy blanket on hand. In the winter, home becomes a sanctuary, a cosy cocoon to protect you from the harsh vagaries of winter. Rather than heading out into the icy chill, it’s much more preferable to stay indoors – and to make indoors the best place it can be. 

UGG Australia are on a mission to inspire people to make the most of their time at home this season, and have collected some recipes and how-to guides for ways to spend your downtime over the coming months to be the best it can be – including some seasonal cocktails from yours truly! 

I’ve been a fan of UGG for a long time; I loved in my UGG boots at University and they’re still pulled out of the cupboard when it’s wet and wild outside, and cosiness is the order of the day. They were kind enough to send me these gorgeous slippers, too, which have barely left my feet since. It’s always a disappointment to go from the furry hug of these bad boys to my regular day shoes.

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Homemade cocktails feel very decadent, but these are simple to make – whether you’re enjoying them alone or with friends. The cocktails I’ve created use seasonal ingredients which are at their best during the coming months – you can find the recipes here, but here’s a little taste for you: 

Winter Sunshine Cocktail

Citrus fruits are one of my favourite things about winter; although we associate their zesty freshness with summer they are at their best in the darkest months – a little gift from nature, perhaps. This cocktail combines clementine juice with vodka, limoncello and rosemary – and don’t forget the sugar rim! 

Spiced Rum Punch

This Spiced Rum Punch which feels like a warm hug in a glass. You can heat this through gently before serving, or drink as is, but the flavours of cinnamon, orange, apple and dark rum are reminiscent of the best parts of autumn and winter. 

As well as these cocktails, you can also pick up tips for blogging, illustration, beauty and a delicious recipe for Wild Blackberry Buns from other bloggers, so you can really make the most of slipper season. 

P.S. Find more cocktail recipes right here.

This post is in association with UGG Australia and I was compensated for these cocktail recipes, but I promise you that these slippers are the bomb-diggity and these cocktails are delicious and will impress your friends. That sugar rim, in particular. I’m tempted to put it on all of my drinks… 

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Bloody Mary Prawns

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There are some things that are just British institutions. The ice cream van. Sunday roasts. Stephen Fry. Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce is one of those British institutions – one that no doubt graces the cupboards of most people reading this – except those from Sheffield, of course, for whom Henderson’s Relish is a source of great pride. But how many of us use worcestershire sauce on a regular basis? Other than for epic grilled cheese sandwiches, my Lea & Perrins remains mostly untouched a lot of the time. So when Lea & Perrins got in touch to challenge me to try making a dish using their sauce, it was time to take down the bottle and get stuck in…

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBlc2JrBsqg]

There’s plenty of inspiration to be found on the Lea and Perrins with Sorted Food channel – I’m particularly taken with the baked eggs for a weekend brunch – but for me, you can’t think of Lea & Perrins without thinking of a Bloody Mary. But rather than just recreating this well-known drink – after all, everyone has a preference for how they like theirs – I whipped up this Bloody Mary Prawns dish. The prawns are super juicy and delicious, and they take on the spicy and savoury flavours of the traditional Bloody Mary so well. This dish makes an indulgent lunch for one or goes perfectly as a tapas-style dish in a larger spread.

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You’ll need: 

  • 3-4 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed or finely grated
  • 225g raw king prawns
  • cayenne pepper
  • 50ml vodka
  • 100ml passata
  • 2-3 drops Tabasco (or more, if you like it spicy!)
  • 10ml Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
  • Celery salt
  • Salt & pepper to taste

lea and perrins 2

1. Cover the raw prawns with a good amount of cayenne pepper and leave to one side.

2. Fry the shallots and garlic in a small amount of oil until starting to brown.

3. Add the prawns and continue to fry for 2-3 minutes until they’re starting to turn pink.

4. Add the vodka and bubble until the liquid is reduced by half.

5. Add the passata, Tabasco, Lea & Perrins, a dash of celery salt and salt & pepper to taste. Stir together and taste the sauce, adding any extra Lea & Perrins, Tabasco or seasoning as necessary.

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6. Simmer for 3-4 minutes until sauce has thickened and remove from the heat.

7. Serve with crusty bread – and celery, if that’s your thing.

bloody mary prawns 2

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This post is in collaboration with Lea & Perrins

Want more? Follow me: Twitter / Instagram / Bloglovin / Pinterest

Penne Alla Vodka

penne 2

Sometimes you just need comfort food. Whether it’s a bad day at work, a fight with a friend or just an overwhelming feeling of ‘meh’, comfort food is like a warm hug from within. My comfort food staples have a few things in common – they’re carby, they’re creamy and usually they’re cheesy. Comfort food is different from junk food. Whilst these dishes may not be the healthiest in the world – there ain’t no kale here – they are so much better cooked from scratch and eaten in (some) moderation. They cease being comforting if you get an intense feeling of guilt once you’re done.

penne 4

This recipe is the one I reach for if I’m feeling a bit down. It’s simple enough that I don’t have to spend the whole night in the kitchen, but it still feels a bit special. It’s got everything I like in my comfort food – plus vodka, which although is not my drink of choice, adds a certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ which can’t be beaten. You can leave the prawns out if you’re not that way inclined, but they add some luxury that you just can’t beat when you need to treat yourself.

This recipe makes enough sauce for about three generous portions, but I usually eat this alone and keep the rest in the freezer for emergencies. Serve with a glass of wine (or of vodka, since you’ll have it on hand…) and a liberal helping of trashy TV. Feel better, friends.

You’ll need:

  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes (or passata, if you prefer)
  • a big squidge of tomato paste
  • vodka (a shot and a half-ish)
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • a pinch of sugar
  • 175g raw prawns (or thereabouts)
  • 50ml double cream
  • 300g pasta (or 100g if you’re on your own)
  • small knob of butter

penne 1

1. Fry the onion in a saucepan over a medium heat until softened. Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes more, being careful not to brown the onions or garlic too much.

2. Add the chopped tomatoes to the pan along with the tomato paste and a shot of vodka.

3. Season with salt and pepper. Add the sugar and stir through thoroughly.

4. Bring to the boil before turning the heat down and simmering for ten minutes or so until thickened.

5. Meanwhile cook the pasta in a separate pan.

6. With around 5 minutes to go, add the prawns to the sauce and stir through.

7. Once the prawns are cooked through (about 3-4 minutes), remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the cream.

8. Drain the pasta and return to the pan. Add the knob of butter and another splash of vodka (about half a shot).

9. Turn up the heat and stir the butter and vodka into the pasta. Continue stirring for a couple of minutes until the butter has melted and the alcohol in the vodka has burnt off.

10. Turn off the heat and add the sauce to the pan. Stir until pasta is fully coated.

11. Serve with grated cheese of your choice, some extra black pepper and a glass of wine.

penne 3

 

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