When life hands you lemons, buy Grey Goose…

My sister said:

Speaking of cocktails, my brother makes a delicious Minted-Vodka Lemonade that is perfect for a hot summer’s day.  You wouldn’t happen to have that recipe, would you?

You are absolutely right that it is perfect for a summer day. In the interest of full disclosure, the drink is not my own, I found the recipe in an issue of Bon Appetit magazine many years ago, and adopted it into my repertoire.

It’s not a particularly distant cousin to the mojito or the whiskey smash, and it’s perfectly easy to make. The drink improves, however, if its ingredients macerate overnight, so it does require a bit of forethought. As its name suggests, the drink is made from mint, lemons, sugar, and vodka.

To begin with, combine equal parts of minced mint, granulated sugar and lemon juice. (For example, 1 cup of minced mint, 1 cup of granulated sugar, and 1 cup of lemon juice.) Muddle them in a non-reactive bowl and refrigerate for as long as you can stand, preferably overnight. In the meantime, you will have crushed 10 or so cups of ice to a medium (1/3 inch) grain. When you are ready to mix the drinks, strain the lemon/sugar/mint mixture into a second bowl through a fine mesh sieve. colander or strainer, using your muddler to extrude as much liquid as possible. Fill a narrow highball, hurricane, or old-fashioned glass with crushed ice add 2 oz of the minted lemon mixture. Add 4 oz vodka and stir to blend. Top with soda water and garnish with a mint sprig and thinly sliced lemon wheel.

You would do well to remember Dorothy Parker’s maxim when drinking this. Though she spoke of martinis, it still applies:

 “I like to have a martini, Two at the very most. After three I’m under the table, after four I’m under my host.”

The day after the fourth martini

About What would Julia do?

Being timid and meek like Dorothy Gale, I have surprised myself by starting this blog. But a few people have suggested I do so, so there it is. I love to eat and I love to drink, so although this blog could be about almost anything I choose to type, there's likely to be a lot about what you put in your mouth. Why the title? Anyone who knows me knows my reverence for Julia Child. I don't think it's hyperbolic to say that our country's interest in the culinary arts would be all but non-existent but for Her. I would not attempt to count the number of people who have cited Her influence in their lives and careers. What Atticus Finch is to lawyers, Julia Child is to the cook, be s/he servantless or professional. Honesty demands me to say that it is not simply Her advocacy of GOOD FOOD that has immortalized her; She had the happy circumstance of coming into her own at a time when media was in her favour. We can all be thankful for that. I would name Julia Child as the patron saint of second starts, but I'm a happy heretic. Julia's dogma goes beyond the kitchen: She has famously stated that "[y]ou've got to have the courage of your convictions..." Her statement applies as equally to any part of one's life as it does to flipping a potato gallette. I will conclude by noting I have my own personal trinity of Js--Julia, Judy Garland, and Joanna Rowling. Please refer back to that part about my being a happy heretic.
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