Mango Menus' Cocktails
What you need:
400 g of watermelon
100 ml (AT LEAST) of Vodka or Bacardi
Juice of 1 lime
1 heaped tablespoon of confectioners/icing sugar
Remove the skin & seeds and cut up 1 inch cubes of watermelon. Place in a ziplock bag and freeze. Once frozen, place in the blender with the lime juice, sugar and Bacardi or vodka. Blend until smooth & frothy (past the Slush puppy consistency). The beauty of the frozen watermelon cubes is that you do not need ice to keep it chilled. I make mine 15 mins before the party starts, place in the fridge then give each a quick stir before giving it to my guest. Serve in Martini/Cosmo glasses if you have them although personally I would drink it from a mug if I had to. You can omit the booze for the non-drinkers for a perfectly decent fruit juice drink, although it does seem a bit of a shame...
It may come as no surprise to you that I LOVE a lycheetini, especially the ones they serve in Hong Kong, so decided to experiment a little at home. And, this is one sure way to liven up a playdate by the way...
What you need:
Large can of lychees in syrup
160 ml best vodka you can afford
Handful of ice
1 inch knob of fresh ginger
Put 2 martini glasses in the freezer with a lychee in the bottom of each. In a cocktail mixer, shake the ice, the lychee syrup (along with the rest of the lychees) and the vodka. You can vary the ratio depending on the time of day or or desired level of inebriation. Add a small squeeze of lime to each and a grating of fresh ginger. Strain & pour into the the frozen glasses. Drink immediately then mix another.
Lemongrass and Ginger Vodka Kefir
I have finally caught the bug that seems to be afflicting most of my fellow Hong Kong Tai Tais, the kefir bug... Having attended my first ever fermenting class with the lovely Louise Kane Buckley from Loula Natural, I kicked off my new hobby with a lemongrass and ginger water kefir, inspired by the one sold at Green Vitamin, which I adore. Then I thought, let's take it one step further and add some vodka. Sure the health benefits of kefir will outweigh the badness of the booze? Er, I guess the answer depends on how many you knock back...
What you need:
Lemongrass and Ginger Kefir (make your own or buy online from GreenVitamin)
Ginger Coconut sugar from Coco Bono, to taste
3 lemongrass sticks
Small grating of ginger
Ferment your water kefir over 36 hours with a stick of lemongrass (outer layer peeled and ends chopped off) and a small slither of fresh ginger. I used the CocoBonoo ginger sugar to give it an extra gingery flavour. Refrigerate until needed. Pour a shot of vodka into a cocktail glass, add a couple of gratings of fresh ginger, thin slices of lemongrass and top up with the kefir (possibly in a ratio of 1:3 but it's up to you). Add another teaspoon of the ginger and use the lemongrass stick as a stirrer.
If you are interested in learning how to makes kefir, Mango Menus highly recommends classes by Loula Natural in Hong Kong, and also the book written by its founder, Louise Kane Buckley, called Culture Your Life.
Mellowcreme Pumpkin Vodka
There are many articles written about how many E numbers and awful artificial substances can be found in store bought Hallowe'en candy, such as this useful one written by Laura Paul from Healthy Living Asia. So, rather than giving this terrible stuff to your precious little angels, far better to infuse vodka with it and take it to YOUR PARTY! Are directions really necessary? HAPPY ALL HALLOWS' EVE!
What you need:
Bottle of vodka
4 mellowcreme pumpkin candies per 200ml
Just throw in a few candies (chopped if they won't go through the bottleneck, which doesn't matter as they will dissolve in a few hours), shake the bottle and refrigerate. It will turn a horrifying orange colour that you can drink as sweet shooters else combine with something fizzy for a longer drink.
In case you found yesterday's watermelon pizza post a little too virtuous, this one may be more up your street: watermelon soju.
This is a fun cocktail idea for summer parties that I tried last night at U·Hang 유행, a Korean restaurant in Sai Ying Pun. Not sure of their recipe but from trawling online it seems you just need a watermelon, bottle of soju, some ice and a straw! Here is one recipe for watermelon soju: Not obvious in the picture is that this straw inserts in the bottom of the watermelon and is held in place by a bit of wire on top, meaning it works like a tap. Let me know how you get on!
U-Hang is another of the restaurants participating in the Food for Thought Sai Ying Pun event organised by Foodie and The Economist, Asia this Saturday. We also tried their fried chicken, 'slaw and pulled pork burgers, the latter of which the chef informed us is his favourite food when drunk. Couldn't agree more.