Friday, July 1, 2011

Basil & Lime Gimlets

Sultry southern nights call for a light refreshing cocktail.  So do sultry Brooklyn nights, where I was introduced to this yummy cocktail by our upstairs neighbors.  It had just been one of those days: hot, humid, and the kid had been stepping on our last nerve.  Nine o'clock rolled around and I got a text from K.T.
K:  Our kid is asleep.  Yours?  Need a cocktail?
Knock on the door, and there were two cocktails waiting on the mat.
Ah, city living!  Anything really can be delivered.
The gimlets were so refreshing and tasty it took some serious restraint not to stick a straw in it and slurp it down.
And so, I'll gladly pass on the recipe that was so kindly shared with me.
Bring on the lightning bugs!

Basil & Lime Gimlets
(Adapted from  Sunset)

For the Basil & Lime Syrup:

Handful of Basil leaves, lightly crushed in your hands
2 cups of water
2 cups of sugar
Zest from one or two limes - depending on size, in 1 inch strips

Combine all ingredients in medium saucepan.  Bring to boil and stir until sugar dissolves.  Remove from heat until cool. Strain syrup through sieve and toss the lime zest and basil.  Store in airtight container in fridge until chilled. Syrup will keep for up to 5 days.

For the Gimlet:

Vodka or Gin (we used vodka but I think Hendrick's gin might be delicious)
Juice from 4 limes
Basil & Lime syrup
Lime wheels and sprigs of basil for garnish

Fill a highball glass with crushed ice.  Add about 3 or 4 tablespoons of vodka, 4 or 5 tablespoons of lime juice (I like them lime-y), and basil-lime syrup to taste. Garnish with a lime wheel and sprig of basil.
Head out to the back porch with a nice white napkin to catch the condensation.  Watch the lightning bugs if you're in Tennessee.  If you're in Brooklyn head out to the stoop to watch the neighborhood.

We made about 6 drinks and had plenty of syrup left over for the next night!

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