So, you might recall from a previous post that the rhubarb vodka was supposed to be ready on or about July 8th. It is now July 27th and I believe it is ready, most of the chunks of rhubarb that were once red are now a pale pink, green or white and every last drop of rhubarb-ness has been sucked out of those chunks! It is also a red-colored, infused vodka but different from strawberry in two ways – first its rhubarb (doh!) and secondly, most people will not be interested in rhubarb vodka.
Just put a funnel into the neck of the bottle the vodka originally came in, line the funnel with a piece of cheesecloth or butter muslin and if you would like a finer strain, lay in one coffee filter under the cheesecloth and slowly pour the infusion in, discarding the chunks of rhubarb as they come out. You may use the chunks to beef up a batch of jam – although all the flavor will have been extracted and it will just leave the pulpy body to add more body to the jam.
I regret that I will not be making a label for this bottle of vodka as it is going straight into the fridge to await my husband’s arrival so that it can be much appreciated on a cool night when we are together again. I might even pull out some cocktail recipes to try it out on – it would make a very nice spritzer anyways! Maybe with some roasted rhubarb Panna cotta, this would be a nice accompaniment. At any rate, I have now bottled another little bit of summer to be enjoyed in the fall and winter! Horrah!
These alcohol infusions are very simple to make and require mindless, daily tending and make me want to make some more – but I think I will save it for next year so that I can truly enjoy it myself. A lemon infusion so that I could make my blue lemon drops would be particularly amusing!
Onto the visitor! Who is visiting you might ask? Dorie Greenspan is coming to dinner! In fact, she will be dining with us every friday and a couple other days in between! While perusing her blog I came across a cook-along of sorts, a promotion for her newest cookbook, Around My French Table, you can create a profile and cook recipes out of her book until they have all been tried at least once, and post about your experience and process on Fridays. You leave your link on the post on Fridays with some comments and the editors and moderators of the page will comment back, check out your blog – as well as other cook-along-ers and readers! During the week leading up to each recipe, there is a problem and question page so that as you are working through the recipe or gathering ingredients, you can clarify any of the directions, etc you may need more information for. It’s a great idea and the plan is to keep the site up and going until every one of the over 300 recipes has been cooked through!
This is very exciting to me and caught the interest of my husband who was stoked to realize that we would know at least one day out of the week for certain what we would be having for dinner (even though it may not be savory or a “meal” per say); and I am genuinely enthused for this project because this will have been the first cookbook that I have truly “cooked through!” Most cookbooks, save a handful of favorites, often have somewhere between 10-20 recipes that I might try, or certainly mark for future attempts, so it is pretty outstanding!
So far, there are 44 recipes that have been posted about on the site, starting from October 2010, so those I have marked and plan to cook through as I work through each week, adding accompaniments to the meal or baking a dessert in the middle of the week. Oh and did I mention that you are not required to cook every recipe, just those that you are interested in, your level of participation is completely up to each individual cook! I am going to push myself though, and regardless of whether I think I will like the recipe or not, I am going to make every recipe!
While my husband is gone, having some people over on Fridays to share the meals would be fun, so consider this an open invitation to have dinner at my house, in our kitchen with Mei, Patella, Dorie Greenspan and of course, me! The cook! You can check out this blog/ cookbook project here. Please note that Ms. Greenspan would like participants to refrain from posting the recipes as the book and posts themselves serve to inspire other cooks to join in the fun!
This friday will be a citrus terrine - my first terrine, and what a great one to get my feet wet with!