Tag Archives: basil

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)

Water

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.

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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.

 

ENJOY!!!!

 

Vodka Infused Basil/ Surprised by the sweetness

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One half cup Vodka.  6 large  clean Basil Leaves.  Let soak for 2 days minimum. 4 days Max. Give it a taste after the first day. Just a fingertip taste.  You will be surprised by the sweetness.

 

I have been thinking a lot about happiness lately.   Why?? I have been unusually happy for the past year.

For decades I searched and hunted for happiness. Looked to other people for my fix . I would make deals. Once I  do this and this, then I will be happy.    I was  wrapped up in  the idea of happiness. I was so busy trying to make it happen. Too stressed  by it all to feel anything but the disappointment of not being “happy”.

Strange thing was I was so busy trying to be happy, I didn’t realize that it was right there the whole time. Happiness comes down to the  “now.” It is inside of this specific moment. You just need to look. The five minute snuggle in the morning.  Hearing your child’s day was “fine”( Kid is in middle school . Fine is a huge descriptor. ) After weeks of trying, getting the step right in my Zumba class. The routine of a Sunday night, family curled up  watching  Mythbusters, eating chinese food. Fighting over the last crab rangoon. These are the moments of my happiness. They are not big moments. Not like the first step or first words. These are the little moments that will be my fondest memories.

Slow down and take time to look at the beauty that surrounds you. Take a deep breath and listen to the giggles of your kids , goofy things done by your spouse and pets.  We get caught up in all of the noise of the world. The tweets, the emails, the immediate influx of so much data.  Everything is BIG BIG BIG. We forget to  really look. We forget to  really listen. I mindfully decided to value the time I have. To value the people I am with in that moment. To stop worrying about where I should be. What I should be doing and just breathe in the moment.  Be in the here and now. I was strangely surprised by the sweetness of the moments around me.  I choose to savor the moments. Relish all the little things. So yes, I am simply happy.

Enjoy your happiness. Wherever  you may find it.

Plant your basil this week .  Grab a pot of mint as well.   Your world is full of smiles.

 

 

Stormy Weather Gardening.

 

No I didn’t take the above picture. I found it on a Canadian Science blog.  I do more than just make drinks  🙂    Sadly, I was not able to find the photographer to give credit.

This week has been the week of super storms. I have been lucky enough to just have plain ol’ thunder and lighting and a little hail. My thoughts and best wishes go out to all of the people who have suffered and luckily survived the storms.

It is pretty dreary here when I look out my window. Grey skies, muggy dampness. I really want to crawl into bed and watch shows on Hulu. But no,  I think if I go to the plant nursery I can talk to all the  people who work there.  (Of course this is the moment the Hail starts)  I decide to quickly assemble dinner.

Rainboots on . Check.   Off I go.

My main reason for growing herbs is that I like to have interesting fresh things around when I create my drinks.  I love being able to wander out my door and cut a few stalks and muddle them or soak them in a liquor to get the flavors out. So if you want to follow and plant along I hope this to be an guide.  It will make it easier to make my drinks if you have the same basics growing around as well.

I didn’t find all the plants I was looking for.  I am still on the hunt for a lemongrass and a lemon verbena. I learned at the nursery that this spring  the plants are a month behind where they normally are. So there is still plenty of time for you to get your herbs in the dirt.

I like to plant on rainy days. I figure the cooler weather keeps the plants from going through shock and I don’t have to water for a few days.   Here are the new additions  to my pots.

English thyme
English thyme

Thyme. I  normally use this on  roast chicken and in stews but I have great hopes for it in cocktails this summer.

Sweet Basil and Spicy Basil
Sweet Basil and Spicy Basil

I also picked up 2 types of Basil. The sweet basil is great for pesto and fresh mozzarella and tomatoes.  The Spicy  Basil isn’t spicy but a more intense basil flavor.  It has a woodier stem,  I think it will be hardier outside. I haven’t grown it before  so I am curious to see what my preference will be. Side note: See how the Sage in the picture is coming back? The stems are purple and green leaves are forming.. YEA!!

Sweet mint and spearmint.
Sweet mint and spearmint.

The spearmint is sweeter and sharper than the sweet mint. We will have to  experiment to see how much of a difference  there is when we make a drink.  Soon as the rain stops. I need to spray paint my pots again. They were a plain brown and that was too boring so one can of silver  spray paint later. Ta da  beauty.. This pot has sat outside  for 2 years. The paint lasts awhile.

Get your hands dirty planting!! Great things will grow.

keep an eye out for Stormy weather the drink!!