I recently restocked my syrups shelf in the fridge so I have found myself enjoying a variety of drinks. Blackberry Jalapeno Smash is one of the mocktails I have found myself making during the COVID isolation. There is not much I can do to defuse my anxiety. One trick that seems to work for me is to focus on cooking.
Eating well and drinking well has become an important part of my daily routine. On most days, it is a welcome distraction for me to focus on building memorable flavors on my plate or in my cup. Since I don’t imbibe alcohol, I have to be creative when it comes to crafting drinks. I am not a fan of mocktails that don’t have a depth of flavor. A drink, alcoholic or not, should not be a mere vessel for sugar into the bloodstream.
One thing I love about this drink is the range it has. The jalapeno syrup in this drink is layered with the pungent herbiness of the celery seeds and heat from the jalapeno. This adds a good balance to the fruitiness of the blackberry. The basil rounds out the delight without being overpowering.
If you are someone that likes your drinks smooth, it is possible to strain this before serving it. However, I find that layering the ice of the blackberry on the bottom provides a lovely filtration system. Of course, I just love how pretty the color transition looks in the glass.
The St.Clements drink is a classic mocktail. Since I am that person that just can’t let things be, I decided to play around with the recipe for the St.Clements. A classic version of the St. Clements features orange juice and bitter lemon. It actually sounds really yummy.
I decided to play on the name of St.Clements drink by using clementine juice. It is the middle of winter and there is an abundance of citrus around. One of the reasons why I wanted something other than orange juice is because I find it a bit much. Clementine juice is much softer and has a floral note when compared to an orange.
For the lemonade or bitter lemon aspect of this St. Clements drink, I made my own syrup. It pretty much follows the formula for the Grapefruit Thyme syrup I shared before. Except, I am using a mix of lemon and lime in this recipe.
The other adjustment to the classic recipe is using a mix of ginger beer and sparkling water to finish up the drink. The ginger adds a bit of heat to the drink to compliment the hint of florals from the clementine and the bitterness of the lemon-lime syrup.
I have a feeling this St.Clements is about to be a drink I reach for constantly. It is such a ready palette to play to with other flavors like basil or even a bit of thyme. I also imagine that infusing some jalapeno into the lemon-lime syrup would make for a memorable drink.
Let me know if you try this recipe. Follow me on Instagram and use the hashtag #willeatthis.
3ozClementine juiceI found that this is the juice of 1.5 clementine
In a drink shaker, add in ice, clementine juice, lemon-lime syrup. Shake.
Strain the clementine juice mix into a tall glass. Add in the ginger beer. Top it off with sparkling water to taste.
The lemon-lime syrup in this recipe refers to my recipe for Grapefruit Thyme syrup. Also, I only added a few ounces of ginger beer because I wanted slight heat. If you prefer, you can top the drink up completely with ginger beer. You can also entirely skip the ginger beer and just use sparkling water. This drink is versatile.