Cheers to spring! In honor of sunshine, longer days, flip flops, and crisp evenings on the patio we've got the perfect cocktail- chock full of all the brightest flavors of spring.
This week rhubarb and sage steal the show in a simple syrup recipe that can be used in all your favorite cocktails, whether its a weekend mimosa or a gin in tonic for sipping after work on your deck while watching your garden grow (that's how I like to drink my cocktails anyways!)
Bright, tart rhubarb adds a tangy punch, while earthy, bitter sage balances everything out nicely. While sage is often thought of as an autumn ingredient (think turkey and stuffing) the sage
in my garden is LOVING the warm days and cool nights we've been having lately. I've been adding it to everything from morning eggs to weeknight pasta, and now, happy hour!
In the Middle Ages, sage was thought to impart wisdom and improve the memory. It was valued for restoring energy, lifting the spirits, and promoting longevity.
Sage leaves have a strong taste that increases as they are dried. Harvest sage in the morning before the heat of the sun evaporates essential oils. To dry, pinch leaves from the stem and place on cloth or paper in the shade, or hang leaves in a bunch on the stem. When leaves are dry, store them in an airtight colored glass or solid container.
Nutrition and storage info from Asparagus to Zucchini: A Guide to Cooking Farm-Fresh Seasonal Produce, Third Edition
Sage-Rhubarb Simple Syrup
1 cup water
1 cup sugar (most simple syrup recipes call for 1 part water, 1 part sugar, but I always go with about 3/4 cup sugar because I don't like things quite as sweet)
2 cups diced rhubarb
1 bunch sage (this is not an exact science!)
Add all ingredients to a pot and bring to a boil.
Once boiling, turn off the heat and cover.
Let stand for a half hour to let the flavors infuse
Strain all of the ingredients using a fine strainer into a glass mason jar or other container. This should stay good in the refrigerator for 1 month!
Sage-Rhubarb Mimosa: 1/2 oz Sage-Rhubarb Simply Syrup topped with dry champagne and fresh sage for garnish.
Sage-Rhubarb Soda: 2 Tbsp Sage-Rhubarb Simple Syrup ,one 12 oz can sparking water, a few sprigs of sage for garnish (adjust to taste)
Sage-Rhubarb Gin and Tonic: ½ oz. Rhubarb-Sage Simple Syrup, splash of lime juice, 1 ½ oz. gin, tonic water and crushed ice, sage leaves and rhubarb stalk for garnish.