Bourbon Iced Tea

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Is there anything more Southern than sweet tea and bourbon? Well, what if you were to mix these two together that make the  ultimate Southern sipper. Pretty ingenious, right? Well this cocktail is prefect for a Sunday brunch or just simply enjoying it on a porch on a summer day…..but remember you must be over 21 to enjoy this refreshing cocktail.

 

 

Makes 1 large pitcher, serves 6 – 8

Ingredients:
Mint Simple Syrup:
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves

For the tea:
3 cups water
2 or 3 black tea bags of good-quality black tea, such as City Harvest Black Tea

For the Cocktail:
1 lemon, sliced into wedges
1 lime, sliced into wedges
1 orange, sliced into wedges
1 cup Woodford Reserve® Bourbon
Orange slices
Ice cubes, for serving
Fresh mint sprig, for garnish
Lemon wheels, for garnish

Directions:
For the mint syrup: Combine the sugar and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until the sugar has melted. Stir in the mint and let steep 30 minutes. Strain the mint leaves and set aside.

To make the tea: Combine the water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Pour the mint syrup into a large jar. Add the tea bags to the jar and let steep for 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how strong you want your tea. If you like your tea very strong, leave the bags in the tea for 8 to 12 hours or overnight in the refrigerator, if desired.

Remove the tea bags and add the lemon, lime, and orange wedges. Pour in the bourbon. Cover the jar and chill.

For the cocktail: Rub the orange slice around the rim of highball glass and fill with ice. Pour the cocktail over the ice and garnish with the mint sprig and a lemon wheel.

A note on serving: Avoid adding ice directly to the pitcher, as it will dilute the cocktail.


Kentucky Bourbon Balls

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Photo Credit: Christin Marhling, 2018.

These boozy bite-sized treats—were developed in 1936 by Ruth Booe, co-founder of the Rebecca Ruth Candy Co. in Frankfort, Kentucky—can be rolled in powdered sugar or dipped in melted chocolate and topped with pecan halves; on the inside, the creamy center usually consists of some combination of bourbon, sugar, butter, chopped pecans, and semisweet chocolate. These trifles are chilled rather than cooked and do pack a tipsy punch, so you may wish to warn younger or teetotalling guests of their alcohol contents.

 

Makes 24

Ingredients:
1 cup finely chopped pecans nuts
5 tablespoons Kentucky bourbon
1/2 cup butter, softened
One 16-ounce  package confectioners’ sugar
8 ounces semisweet chocolate

Directions:
Place the nuts in a resealable jar. Pour the bourbon over the nuts. Cover and allow the nuts to soak overnight.

The following day, mix the butter and sugar; fold in the soaked nuts. Form into 3/4″ balls and place on a waxed paper lined baking sheet and  refrigerate overnight.

The next day, line a baking sheet with waxed paper. Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over just-barely simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula to avoid scorching. Roll the balls in the melted chocolate to coat. Place a pecan half on top of each ball and  arrange them on the prepared tray. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.


Upside Down Blood Orange and Kumquat Pineapple Cake

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Brightened up your winter diet with seasonal citrus fruit season, And nothing has more flair than a blood orange. The sweet, sour, tangy and unbelievably bright blood orange is bursting with juicy flavor that is reminiscent of an orange, tangerine and lemon, all they while drenched in its own crimson uniqueness. This cake definitely lets the orange’s ruby flesh shine. We also kumquats. And the hidden surprise of pineapple to the batter. The result is a festive fruit dessert guaranteed to lift even the worst winter doldrums.

Serves 8 to 10

Ingredients:
3 blood oranges, thinly sliced
1 dozen kumquats, thinly sliced
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup  water
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
½ cup unsalted butter, melted
½ cup of extra virgin olive oil
2 large eggs at room temperature
1 cup crushed pineapple, drained
Zest of one lemon, for garnish

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C).

Liberally spray the cake pan and line the pan with parchment paper.

To make the candied citrus fruits by whisking together the sugar and water in a large sauce pan. Heat on medium heat until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Gently add the sliced oranges and kumquats and simmer on low heat for an additional 3 minutes and then remove from the heat.

Layer the cake pan with the slices covering the entire bottom of the pan and gently pour ½ cup of the remaining syrup over the slices.

To make the cake batter, prepare your wet and dry ingredients. In a large bowl,whisk the dry ingredients, the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cardamom together until well combined. in a second bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients, the butter, olive oil,eggs and pineapple until combined into a homogeneous mixture, about 2 minutes. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients only until just combine, do not over mix.

Pour the batter into pan over the citrus fruit. Transfer to oven and bake until cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center emerges clean, 40 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan 10 minutes, then run a knife along pan’s edges to loosen it; invert onto a platter, remove the parchment paper. Allow the cake to cool completely before serving. Sprinkle with lemon zest, if desired.

 

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