All posts by emzmommie02

Strawberry Basil Lemonade

I love strawberries.  Especially fresh  ripe strawberries. These are still growing. I hope I am around to enjoy the ones growing in my garden, so I will make do with store bought ones.

I had another week of  being really busy. What happened to my cushy life that included time for a nap???? Soon summer will be here and I will have more time to play. Isn’t that what summer means, playtime and relaxation?

I needed a pitcher of drinks. I am having people over and  I am not patient enough to be fussing over martinis.  One pitcher of strong drinks that I can cut with seltzer water for those folks who don’t need this as badly as I do.

Here it is.

1 can frozen pink lemonade. (or 1 packet of crystal light lemonade)


1/2 cup Strawberry Basil Vodka

6 Strawberries sliced.

1 Lemon thinly sliced.

1/4 cup of plain Vodka.

1 sprig of Basil

1 sprig of Mint

Slice strawberries and lemons, Place in Pitcher with 1/2 c plain vodka.


Toss in fridge and run around and solve assorted problems. ( there really isn’t a reason to wait)

Come back  and pour in strawberry basil vodka

remember this??
remember this??

Add sprig of Basil and Spring of Mint

fruits and vodka and herbs

Mix lemonade  according to directions on package in another container.  Pour into  pitcher. Add Ice.

Strawberry Basil Lemonade

Taste. if too  potent mix into a single glass 1/2 cup Strawberry basil lemonade and 1/4 c seltzer.




Strawberry basil vodka.

Feels like summer is here. Spring brought us a week of rain . Boom!! Its hot and muggy.

The herbs are happy.


My plants are growing. Last year,  I let my strawberry plant get a bit wild.  It send out all kinds of shoots and I now have numerous plants. Of course they are growing under my bulbed  flowers. Maybe the rabbits won’t notice.


This week  I am feeling a summer drink. Something to enjoy sipping while sitting in the backyard enjoying the sun.  Or something to drink while dreaming of having the time to sit.

I am making a strawberry basil infusion.  Sweet and spicy.strawberry basil vodka

Strawberry Basil Vodka

2 large strawberries

1 spring basil

1/2 cup of vodka.

Let the  Strawberries and Basil sit in the dish 24 hours. Pull the Basil out let the strawberries sit another day. YUM!!




Watermelon cooler

Sorry about the delay I was caught in upstate MN without wi fi and a plethora of mosquitos.

Creating this drink was harder than I thought. Who knew watermelon wouldn’t have a strong enough flavor to infuse into liquor.  After a few  yuck faces and then  lots of experimenting, I had flashbacks to getting a term paper in before the deadline. Of course this was about liquor and way more fun but  still more  pressure and steps than usual.

4 cups of cut watermelon

1/4 of a sliced fresh pineapple

Tequila watermelon from last blog.

3 extra shots of plain tequila

1 tsp Sugar

1 Pinch of salt



Place 4 Cups of watermelon in blender with pinch of salt.

Whip it. Whip it good. (  Sing it, Devo)


Put  puree through strainer.

Straining watermelon puree

I really need a better strainer,

You will have Watermelon juice. Set aside.

Put pineapple and the  watermelon tequila into blender.

Drink one shot of tequila.

Now strain the pineapple watermelon puree.

Blend  both types of juices

Taste.  Depending on the sweetness of your watermelon and pineapple you may need to add sugar.

Season with sugar as needed. Taste. If you think it needs more tequila add it.   I thought It needed the extra 2 shots of tequila.  I did have a tough week. 😉

Serve over ice.

Watermelon pineapple tequila

Or toss it all back into the blender with ice and serve frappe style.

Frozen watermelon cooler

I did give this drink as payment  to a friend who took me to the airport.

She gave it a thumbs up.  So I now know who to call to take me to the airport.   Thanks C!!!



Carp in the bathtub gin…..

Carp  in the bathtub
Carp in the bathtub

Most of you haven’t  heard  the  child’s story about a carp in the bathtub. In the 1920’s some Jewish women would buy live carp from the fish store and keep it in the bathtub alive until  it was time to make  gefilte fish. Horrifying  to  you gentiles. Yet this one one of the strangely  not creepy at the time, picture books of my childhood.  I remember the black and white sketch of children playing with the fish and rejoicing about the no bath nights.Then  a few flips of the page and there was  a sketch  of a little woman leaning over the tub with some kind of clubbing device in her hand and a really small bucket. A few years of therapy later, I  see a PBS documentary about folks making bathtub gin during prohibition. The little lady with the club and the bucket pop into my head.  If only she knew about the bathtub gin. Might have made for some  different gefilte fish.

It seems I am a strange blend of the two.  I am (for the record )not making or clubbing anything in my tub. .   Just making things in ramekins with plastic seal lids. But still fighting with children about bath times.

So this week I am in a time crunch. I have to invent a drink in 49 hours.  It is a long drawn out story why have I have no time.  So I have to hedge my bets.

I have 2 concoctions in my fridge. All watermelon based.

Watermelon in 3 liqours

Gin, Watermelon 


Yes, I have walked  a  long, hard road to get my reprieve of 49 hours. My segway out before I jump back in. I feel I need to state I am not serving a  jail sentence. Just family commitments.  My goal is to not only make a great drink but to figure out how I am going to get it thru TSA and the airport so I can survive the second part of this journey.  Sadly I will freeze it and enjoy it over the next few weekends. I am not a moonshiner and I follow all TSA rules.

( I am drinking the finished cocktail 1 hr before I go to the airport. who says I can’t make my drink and have it too.)

Recipe #1

1/4 cup of  diced watermelon

1/8 cup  of pineapple

1/4 cup Tequila

Combine in glass bowl. let sit 24-36 hrs. ( I was in a time crunch folks)

Enjoy your week.

The Gin Watermelon will be next weeks blog.  Just a  hint  of the future.




Cucumber berry cooler

It’s Memorial Day Weekend. Looks like the weather will be nice for most of us. Enjoy friends, family, boating,  eating and most of all a refreshing beverage. Be safe  and have some fun.

Cucumber berry cooler

1/2 cup of cucumber mint vodka ( we made it last blog)

2 cans of fresca

Handful of blueberries

6 mint leaves.

1 tsp sugar

2 slices of lemon


Pour vodka into pitcher. In the bowl that  the vodka was in muddle blueberries  mint and sugar. Squish them really good. Scrape into pitcher of vodka. Place 1 cup of ice in pitcher.  Mix all  together with big spoon. Add Fresca. Squeeze the juice out of the 2 lemon slices drop into pitcher.  Serve over crushed ice.

Stock the bar.

I like things quick, easy and simple. One of my pet peeves is all the bottles of different liquor you need to have on hand  to make a cocktail. I will see   beautiful drinks on Pinterest. I will think .”Ooh that looks great, but I don’t have any of those things in my cupboard.”  I  hate to buy exclusive, specialty liquors and be stuck with them.  I have spent 55 dollars at the store to get the fixings for a Lemon drop martini.  It called for Tausca  which is a vanilla citrus liquor.

3 yrs later here it is.

3 years later still have some left.
3 years later I still have some left.

I  get bored quickly. With cocktails, with recipes. On Friday cocktail days, I can’t stick with one drink the whole afternoon.  We  always mix it up.  This is what drinkswithdana is all about. Having a few basic ingredients on hand and being able to make a bunch of yummy drinks.  The shrub was a little out of my normal context of things. One thing I can promise is   I will never be  boring.

So what do you need to have on hand??

#1.  Vodka. Don’t go cheap. You don’t need to go too high end. I like Kettle one, Absolute and SKY.  Any  vodkas of this level are good. I pick which ever one is one sale.   I know some people are really nervous with vodka. But we are not making shots. If the drink is too strong add extra seltzer or 7 up.

#2. Gin :  Bombay

#3. Tequila: Jose Cuervo

#4.  Seltzer, Flavored or plain.  I buy one small liter unflavored and a few flavored ones. The grocery store runs them on sale .  They  will sit in the cabinet until you need them.

#5.  7 up, Ginger ale, Sprite.  La Croix. Choose your favorite or whatever is on sale.  I buy the 12 pack cans so they don’t go flat.  I usually buy diet or no calorie,  Again you make your personal sugar or sweetener choice. This is about your happiness,

#6. Wine. In   most of my recipes that include wine, we are flavoring it. High quality is a waste. I try to stay in the $6-9 range. Again sale prices determine a lot. I try to have  on hand   these types of whites: Moscato, Pinot Grigio,  Sauvignon blanc.  Any of these work.  You just need to control for sweetness. For Reds usually I use red blends in Sangrias.

#7. Prosecco.  I found a some great versions for mixing that are between 5.99 and 9.99  a bottle.  I will talk about those in future blogs about prosecco.

#8. Fruit.  I try to stay in season. I am too frugal to spend top dollar for crummy fruit.

Odd popsicles, left over sherbert, other odd left over kid desserts. Ice. Lots of ice..

cucumber mint vodka
cucumber mint vodka

This weeks infusion. Cucumber  Mint Vodka.

1/2 cup of Vodka

1/4 of a large cucumber

5 Mint leaves

Glass bowl or cup.

Wash your cucumber leave skin on, slice thinly, add mint leaves Pour vodka over it. let sit 1-2 days.


Cleaning out the fridge.

It’s Sunday night and I’m cleaning out my fridge.  I have a peach that is  wrinkled and shriveled. I have a half eaten grapefruit from breakfast. Some raspberries that will probably be moldy tomorrow. All safely edible but not glamourous. I have some shady sparkling red wine I got “talked’ into by a wine rep.   Mad men is on tonight. I will want a cocktail in my hand while waiting for Don to find happiness. We are addicted to this show.  I crack up everytime my husband looks at me with a  straight face and says. “Tonight Don will be happy right?”   A Vodka tonic is a bit much for a Sunday night. Sangria it will be.

1 Bottle of barefoot bubbly summer red wine.

1 can le croix orange

1 shriveled peach

1/2 grapefruit sections peeled

1/2 pint of raspberries.

2 shots cherry vodka

2 shots of Cointreau or other orange liquor

2 shots of raspberry shrub. ( I am freezing the rest of this into ice cubes)

Muddle your fruit in the vodka and Cointreau.

barefoot wine


Add wine, La croix and shrub. Add Ice.  Pour and serve.

If you don’t have the shrub you will need to add lemons. This was really sweet before the acid of the shrub.

Next post will be basics for stocking your bar.