Category Archives: Drinks & Cocktails

Go Green on Cinco de Mayo: Green Jalapeño Margarita

Written by Liz -

Green Jalapeño Margarita recipe

Here’s a trend I’ve been seeing lately: adding spinach to smoothies, grating zucchini into brownies and stirring pumpkin into soup and pastas. This may sound crazy, but these are all good ways to get more nutrients into our diets, which most of us need! And, they really do taste delicious…or, rather, I should say they don’t taste at all. I can’t even detect the extra veggies added to these particular dishes, so I get to eat my favorite foods with one extra, effortless serving of vegetables.

So, I soon became a spinach-smoothie convert, throwing a handful of spinach into any combination of frozen fruit, yogurt and instant breakfast mix I was blending. As May rolled around, I realized I could easily incorporate this trick into one of my favorite cocktails: the frozen margarita! Plus, I love jalapeños and drinks with a bit of spice. Adding a few fresh slices of this hot pepper + spinach gives your frozen margarita some heat, as well as a gorgeous green color. And it still tastes like that awesome beach trip to Mexico.

Green Jalapeño Margarita

Ingredients for 2 servings:

  • 3/4 cup fresh spinach leaves
  • 1/4 cup Tequila blanco
  • 1/4 cup orange liqueur (such as Triple Sec or Grand Marnier)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 to 4 slices fresh jalapeño chile
  • 10 to 12 cilantro leaves
  • 2 cups crushed ice
  • Coarse salt

Directions:

PLACE spinach, Tequila, liqueur, Juicy Juice, lime juice, jalapeño slices, cilantro and ice in blender; cover. Blend until smooth.

DIP rims of glasses into water; dip into salt and shake off excess. Pour margarita mixture into glasses. Garnish each with a jalapeño slice, if desired.

Cook’s Tip: Increase amounts of jalapeño, cilantro and spinach leaves according to taste.

Whole Fruit Margarita

Another option for frozen margaritas is adding whole fruits to the mix, as shown by Better Recipes above.

Links:

Related recipes:

strawberry margarita recipe
Strawberry Margarita
Limoncello Basil Cooler recipe
Limoncello Basil Cooler

Simple Smoothies Made Fresh with Local Produce

Written by Chris -

Orange Vanilla Bliss Recipe

I’ve been on quite the smoothie kick lately. This was initially driven by a recipe assignment, but now I guess you can say I am a little obsessed. It seems like I have been blending continuously for months now! Nestlé Coffee-mate has a new line of all-natural creamers that, dare I say, might just be the perfect addition to smoothies!

If you haven’t heard, Nestlé Coffee-mate recently introduced an all-natural (dairy) coffee creamer line called Natural Bliss. It’s made of only four simple ingredients: milk, cream, sugar and natural flavor. It comes in three delicious flavors: Vanilla, Caramel and Sweet Cream. It’s also gluten free and has ZERO trans fats. Got to love that! New to the line is Low Fat (YAY!) Vanilla. It has 20 calories per tablespoon compared to 35 in the regular version.

Nothing beats farm-fresh produce – especially in smoothies! Every chance I get, I load up at my local farmers’ market. I recently picked up the sweetest, juiciest cara cara (pink navel) oranges grown just a few miles away and used them in this Orange Vanilla Bliss smoothie. The flavor, oddly enough, is very similar to an Orange Julius beverage – remember those?

Orange Vanilla Bliss Recipe

Orange Vanilla Bliss

Ingredients for 2 servings:

Directions:

PLACE orange juice, Coffee-mate, banana and ice in blender; cover. Blend until smooth. Divide between 2 glasses; enjoy!

Green smoothies seem to be all the rage lately. And they should be! Spinach is comprised of approximately 51% protein – pretty cool, right?

Green Mango Smoothie Recipe

If you aren’t wild about spinach, give kale, mustard greens or collard greens a try. The addition of these leafy green vegetables provide your body with sources of dietary fiber, vitamins A, C, E, and K, folate, calcium, magnesium and iron. You most likely won’t even know they are there! In fact, this is the smoothie my daughter liked most and it took her forever to guess what made it so vibrant green. This Mango Green Smoothie uses Sweet Cream Natural Bliss (I think it might just be my favorite of all the flavors!).

Green Mango Smoothie Recipe

Green Mango Smoothie

Ingredients for 1 serving:

Directions:

PLACE mango, spinach, coconut water, Coffee-mate, lime juice and ice in blender; cover. Blend until smooth.

I can’t wait to share additional Nestlé Coffee-mate Natural Bliss recipes that Doughmesstic created in a future post. I had a blast blending up all of her recipes last week! What’s your favorite way to use coffee creamer (other than in coffee)? Let me know in the comments below.

Links:

Other Smoothie recipes:

Blissful Fruit Smoothies Recipe
Blissful Fruit Smoothies
Iced Caramel Bliss Coffee Recipe
Iced Caramel Bliss Coffee

Bachelor in the Kitchen: A Fiesta for President’s Day

Written by Nick -

Abuelita Enmoladas Recipe

This year President’s day fell on February 20th which might also happen to be National Margarita Day (there are conflicting reports for Feb 20 and Feb 22). Well, I don’t make the rules I just abide by them and If I HAVE to celebrate Washington’s Birthday (and maybe also yesterday) with a day off of work and a margarita, that’s fine by me. It only seems fitting to find the perfect Mexican dish to pair with these margaritas. So, when most of the country was hanging USA flags on Monday, I was mixing up some margaritas and cooking Abuelita Enmoladas.

And if I’m going to go through the trouble of pairing a meal with a dish for a national holiday, I like to call it a “celebration.” So I invited the local riff-raff over for Abuelita Enmoladas to celebrate President’s Day/Margarita Day.

To say everyone loved the food is an understatement. I was even complimented days later on how tasty the enmoladas were. When they come back days later to tell you how good it was you know it’s true! The great thing about this recipe is how easy it is to make. The only tricky part is dipping tortillas in the sauce and then rolling the enmoladas – it can get a bit messy.

So, if it’s President’s Day or Labor Day try pairing Abuelita Enmoladas and Margaritas for your next celebration!

Abuelita Enmoladas

Ingredients for 8 servings:

Directions:

PLACE water, sofrito, chipotle chiles, adobo sauce and bouillon in blender; cover. Blend until smooth.

PLACE mixture in large saucepan. Add Abuelita chocolate. Cook, stirring frequently, over medium-low heat for 5 minutes or until chocolate has dissolved completely and sauce has thickened. Set aside; keep warm.

HEAT oil in large skillet. Fry tortillas one at a time for 2 to 3 seconds to soften. Drain tortillas on paper towels. Dip tortillas in Abuelita mixture.

FILL dipped tortillas evenly with cheese; roll and place in serving dish. Pour remaining Abuelita sauce over tortillas. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and top with onion and cilantro; serve immediately.

Nick D’s Margaritas

Ingredients for 4 servings:

  • Tequila – to taste
  • Triple Sec – to taste
  • Lime Juice – to taste
  • Lemon Juice – to taste
  • Splash of agave nectar

Directions:

Put all ingredients in a shaker with some ice. Shake and pour over ice. Serve with Abuelita Enmoladas! Adjust recipe (to taste) and pour another.

Although I don’t follow a strict margarita recipe, I did find this recipe for Blood Orange Margaritas from @CreativCulinary that I can’t wait to try.

Links:

Related Recipes:

Chicken and Cheese Entomatadas Recipe
Chicken and Cheese
Entomatadas
Easy Mole Sauce Recipe
Easy Mole
Sauce

Top 10 New Year Cocktail & Coffee Recipes

Written by Liz -

Coffee Abuelatini recipe

1. Coffee Abuelatini

With iced coffee, chocolate and cinnamon flavors, this Coffee Abuelatini above is a classy choice for entertaining.

Puerto Rican Rum Punch (Coquito) recipe

2. Puerto Rican Rum Punch (Coquito)

Try this Latin-inspired cocktail to add some spice to your New Year.

After Midnight Javatini recipe

3. After Midnight Javatini

After Midnight Javatini above is terrific for holiday late-night celebrations. A chocolate-rimmed glass and a hint of coffee liqueur add a flavorful twist and a festive flair to this one-of-a-kind beverage.

Spiced Apple Cider Recipe

4. Spiced Apple Cider

Cloves, cinnamon sticks and anise pods give this Spiced Apple Cider a festive and tasty flair that you will completely love. For an adult party, add an optional splash of vanilla vodka or rum.

Hot Peppermint Mocha Shots recipe

5. Hot Peppermint Mocha Shots

For some non-alcoholic drink, these Hot Peppermint Mocha Shots add a peppermint kick and hint of coffee to your cocoa for a grown-up version of a childhood favorite. This tasty winter warmer is a rich and decadent party pleaser.

Vanilla Cappuccino recipe

6. Vanilla Cappuccino

And for a morning-after rouser, try this simple Vanilla Cappuccino above, with a hint of cinnamon.

Caramel Macchiato Cappuccino Recipe

7. Caramel Macchiato Cappuccino

Craving the coffeehouse taste at home? Try the smooth, rich flavor of Coffee-mate Caramel Macchiato, a shot of espresso and steamed milk in this easy Cappuccino recipe. It doesn’t get more delicious.

Heavenly Hazelnut Hot Chocolate Liqueur recipe

8. Heavenly Hazelnut Hot Chocolate Liqueur

Hot chocolate with coffee and hazelnut liqueurs shown above will warm your soul on a cold night.

Rich 'N Creamy Mint Cocoa recipe

9. Rich ‘N Creamy Mint Cocoa

This elegant Creamy Mint Cocoa is perfect for chilly nights. Add a little Irish crème liqueur to add extra dimension! Top with whipped cream and dusting of cocoa.

Hot Buttered White Chocolate Caramel Espresso recipe

10. Hot Buttered White Chocolate Caramel Espresso

Hot Buttered White Chocolate Caramel Espresso is rich and flavorful and ready in 5 minutes. This one is perfect for entertaining.

Enjoy Hot Cocoa Three Ways this Winter

Written by Chris -

Hazelnut Hot Cocoa recipe

Are you ready for National Cocoa Day? These recipes will help. Hot cocoa is a perennial favorite, but a steaming hot mug of cocoa is especially nice during the holidays. And there are so many ways to spice it up! One day I may add ancho chili powder and cinnamon, another fresh orange peel and ground cloves. The additions really depend on one’s mood.

The other day I swirled a spoonful of Nutella into my hot cocoa. It was good, but not knock-your-socks-off good. I added a little cinnamon and a dash of salt and my socks were off! It’s dessert in a cup! This just happens to be a kid-favorite as well – or I should say – a triplet favorite.

Hazelnut Hot Cocoa

Ingredients needed for 1 serving:

  • ¾ cup lowfat milk, heated
  • 1 envelope Rich Milk Chocolate Flavor NESTLÉ Hot Cocoa Mix
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons hazelnut spread (such as Nutella or Carla Cream)
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

POUR milk into large mug; stir in hot cocoa mix, hazelnut spread, cinnamon and salt. Enjoy!

Fresh Mint-Infused Hot Cocoa recipe

Not every hot cocoa recipe must be rich. This Fresh Mint-Infused Hot Cocoa above is light and polite. It calls for mint but rosemary is just lovely! If you aren’t a fan of mint or rosemary, give fresh orange peel a try. Citrus and chocolate are a match made in heaven!

Hot Cocoa Gift with Holiday Dippers recipe

Hot Cocoa with Holiday Dippers will make a perfect gift for teachers – and the best part – kids can make and assemble with a little guidance from a parent.  Large marshmallows, peppermint sticks and plastic spoons are dipped in chocolate then coated in sprinkles. To assemble, pile mini marshmallows into a large mug, add a few packages of hot cocoa, then add the coated sticks. Wrap securely in cellophane to keep fresh, and that’s it! Homemade gifts are the best!

How do you take your hot cocoa?

Happy holidays!

Links:

More hot cocoa recipes:

Hot Cocoa Mix In A Jar recipe
Hot Cocoa Mix In A Jar
Mexican Hot Cocoa recipe
Mexican Hot Cocoa

Pitcher Drinks: Cool Summer Sips & Cocktails

Written by Liz -

Limoncello Basil Cooler recipe

You may remember from previous posts that I love a little herb in my desserts – well, I also love a little herb in my drinks. Especially basil. And cilantro. And rosemary…ok I love them all. Give me a fennel-infused bloody mary with a touch of cilantro plus all the fixin’s and I’m a happy girl.

I was an equally happy girl when I found these easy summer drink recipes: one uses limoncello and basil and the other uses wine and sparkling orange mineral water. Both can be made by the pitcher for groups and parties, and you can always infuse your own personality into the drink – as I found out at a recent wine cocktail aperitivi party on California’s central coast.

For the Limoncello Basil Cooler pictured at top, you can easily follow the recipe; it’s oh so refreshing after a long day. Or, to create a South of the Border version, use 1 part margarita mix and 1 part dry white wine instead of limoncello, add fresh lime and lemon juice, and replace the basil with cilantro. You can even add a dash of Tequila!

Limoncello Basil Cooler

Ingredients for 6 small servings:

  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil sprigs
  • 1 bottle (750 ml) limoncello liqueur, chilled, divided
  • 1 bottle (16.9 fluid ounces) PERRIER Sparkling Natural Mineral Water
  • Crushed ice cubes
  • 6 basil sprigs for serving

Directions:

MUDDLE or smash 1/2 cup basil with 1/4 cup limoncello with a wooden spoon in a large pitcher. Add remaining limoncello and sparkling water.

FILL glasses half full with ice. Top with limoncello mixture, holding back bruised basil; garnish with basil sprig.

Fruity White Wine Spritzers recipe

Another super easy crowd pleaser is this recipe for Fruity White Wine Spritzers. These take no time to put together if you just follow the recipe (a little bit hard for me!) OR you can really go crazy substituting your favorite fruit, juices and herbs to get something totally unique. Get some ideas here.

Have fun mixing it up!

Links:

Related drink recipes:

Sparkling Sangria recipe
Sparkling Sangria
Strawberry Bliss Aguas Frescas recipe
Strawberry Aguas Frescas
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