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Smashing Pumpkin Bourbon Cocktail

DSC_6837-lowI am not easing into autumn, I am diving, face-first, and smothering my face with pumpkin flavored deliciousness. After the french toast of the weekend, I got a real taste for all things pumpkin. Getting home from work today (Monday- no judgements) I was aimlessly opening cupboards, the fridge, my usual hiding places for chocolate to see if I could find any “treat” to eat. I am either way too good of a hider or I have eaten it all (not sure which is worse) because there was no “treat” to be found. But then, I spotted it! The leftover Brownwood Farms pumpkin butter I had used for french toast over the weekend was just sitting there looking sad, lonely, and leftover…kind of like me on a Monday. Now, I really wanted a “treat”, but what do I always want on a Monday? A drink. Perfect.

I climbed up on my stool and pull down some Bourbon, rumbled through the cupboard and found a bottle of maple syrup, some ground cinnamon, and a lone ginger beer in the back of the fridge. I had all the makings for the most perfect autumn cocktail that ever existed. To be completely frank, I had a bit of trepidation about adding pumpkin butter thinking that it might end up being a bit grainy or overwhelming. I am now on my 3rd Smashing Pumpkin Bourbon Cocktail and I can assure you that there is not a grain to be seen. It is positively divine and also has curbed any sweet tooth desire for after dinner chocolate.DSC_6774-lowres

I’m about to make another. Thank goodness I already took all the pictures or else my camera might have ended up swimming in bourbon.

Ingredients: Makes 1 cocktail (You will need more)

To Prepare:

*Note: I hate making one cocktail at a time, that is time I could be spending drinking. Therefore, mix all the ingredients except the ginger beer into a jug. Just before serving pour about 1/4 c (60mL) into a glass and top with ginger beer and ice. Fresh and perfect without wasting time.DSC_6812-lowres

  1. Mix all ingredients except ginger beer into glass.
  2. Add a couple pieces of ice.
  3. Top with ginger beer.
  4. Drink responsibly. It could be Monday.
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Watermelon (Booze Optional) Basket

I have been eating and drinking for 6 days straight at the Montrealian wedding of one of my best friends. I got home late last night and when I woke up this morning, I pitter-pattered my feet into the bathroom and did the stupidest thing I have done in a while (and it’s a low bar). I got on the scale, shrieked, took my socks off, got back on, and then cried for a solid 6 minutes. I have certainly been this fat in the winter, but never in the summer. Oy vay.DSC_5703What’s worse? It is only August. That means there are 5 more weekends of barbecues, drinks, dinner parties and, more importantly, s’mores. Tonight, is one of those party nights, and while I may need to starve, not everyone else should suffer, so I decided to compromise with a watermelon basket. I used to make these all the time with my Grandmother, carefully cutting out the handle and then scooping out the divine watermelon inside, then carefully layering in all the gorgeous summer fruit. So, if your beach bod is suffering, look no further than this basket.
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Serves 8  (and can be kept for 3 days)

Ingredients:

1 watermelon

6 cups mixture of fruit of any kind

1 cup vodka or rum as desired

 

To prepare:

1. Using a pen or small knife, draw a line horizontally around the watermelon longways.

2. Draw a handle across horizontally.

3. Simply carve out the areas that you don’t want to have the handle.

4. Scoop out the watermelon and dose in booze if desired.

For more details on a beautifully designed basket click here.

 

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Bailey’s Popsicles

There are a few, very specific things that I really love in this world. The list changes, but  there are a few things that always remain; Henry (my dog), Donut (my parent’s dog), hammocks, back rubs, dessert, and cocktails. The last two make you fat. But, if I could figure out a way to combine the two, would they make me half as fat? I think so. It’s worth, at the very least, a really valiant try. So, I present, Bailey’s Popsicles. What more could a girl ask for? A hammock.

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These took me approximately 2 minutes to put together and boy were those two minutes worth the effort. I got these fancy dancy popsicle molds from Food52, but honestly, a dixie cup with a stick would work just as well. I firmly believe that combining my two favorite things did produce half the calorie intake. The fact that I ate 8 of them is irrelevant. DSC_5790

Top Tip: If you don’t have popsicle molds or prefer to refrain from eating a phallic symbol for dessert, you can pour these babies into an ice cube tray and serve with Bailey’s. You might be drunk, but you’ll certainly be in heaven. Are those synonymous?

Makes 6 servings:

Ingredients:

  • 120 mL double cream (1/2 cup heavy cream)
  • 480 mL whole milk (2 cups)
  • 3 Tbs instant coffee
  • 2 Tbs whole cane sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 3.5 oz Bailey’s Irish Cream
  • Fancy popsicle molds (or dixie cups)

To Prepare:

  • Bring all the ingredients except for the Bailey’s to a boil. Refrigerate for one hour or up to 1 day. Add the Bailey’s and popsicle away. These took about 3 hours to freeze for me. But I kind of rushed it 😉

 

 

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The Wedding Gin Bucket

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I waddled my way to a church this past weekend in a dress that definitely fit last summer, but considering I had to lie down to zip it up, I clearly haven’t lost all of my winter coat yet. But, wedding season is just about in full swing, so I better get on top of that, or at least indulge in something that makes me not care either way. On that note, in comes the gin bucket, probably one of the greatest inventions ever created that I was only recently educated on during the wedding of my best friend Meghaan last summer in Montana. Meghaan from Missurah (Missouri) was getting married to a real live cowboy. A real one. How ridiculously cool is that? Plus, I forgot to mention that she is a real live cowgirl. I couldn’t wait.

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The Groom

 

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The Venue

 

I arrived in probably the most beautiful venue for a wedding imaginable, the pictures truly don’t do it justice. The groom, as handsome as can be, the bride, stunning as per usual, it was just simply picturesque. The mountains behind us, the horses grazing in the fields, haybales for chairs, and then, the gin bucket. Now, the bride went to school at University of Missouri and there is an (I guess you would call it this) extracurricular activity group called GDI (God Damn Independents (from fraternity/sorority which they think are stupid…I was in a sorority, oh well)) or, as I lovingly refer to them, my drunken, redneck friends from Missurah.  These dudes sure know how to drink.

Big John, a fellow bridesmaid, was a bit of a leader in GDI and as a dutiful bridesmaid, felt it appropriate to make sure the bride didn’t get cold feet i.e. booze her up. Hence, the gin bucket. As Big John said, “Liberty grab

1 bottle of gin

1 bottle of vodka (bottle size at your discretion “Liberty get the BIGGER one”)

1 bottle of lemonade

1 bottle of ginger ale

fill bucket with ice

Sit back, Relax, and Enjoy the Show” (there is no easier recipe on earth…got to just keep it real simple sometimes folks)

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 Not only did the bridesmaids above (Big John, ME, and Bridget) imbibe, as well the bride, but the Reverend couldn’t help but partake.

 

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The Bride

 

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The Reverend

So, for all your wedding woes whether you are the bride or groom (no cold feet), the bridesmaids/groomsmen (no boredom), or the Reverend (not sure what to say about that one), this is the wedding drink for you. With the parting words of Big John, “Just remember what it does Liberty”.

Don’t worry, they made it.

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