You must think that I’m on a Blueberry craze right now, given the succession of recipes featuring these dusty blue pearls. But when you’re presented with overflowing quarts of them at the market and it’s already late August, you step right up and grab your quart of blue pearls without batting an eyelid.
We had some friends from New Zealand stay with us a few weekends ago, giving us the perfect excuse to throw a summer party. And play with summer ingredients. On the menu were watermelon and feta salad with chili and basil, herb couscous, grilled corn, sausages and meltingly tender lamb chops with rosemary. But the highlight of planning the menu though, was deciding on the libations we would have.
No matter how many beers or bottles of Champagne are stashed away in the cooler, there’s nothing quite like a cocktail to dress up a BBQ. Our standard routine is for M to brew a big bowl of Sangria the day before. Delicious of course, but overly familiar and I was itching to experiment with something new.
Enter Hendrick’s Gin. These were the people who kept us sweetly inebriated and happy at SF Chefs with their daily concoctions of fruit cocktails. Of the many we sampled, this Blueberry Buck was a clear winner simply because of how easily it went down. Before we knew it, our cups were empty and off we trotted to the big punch bowl and asked, not unlike a certain Mr Twist, for more.
Blueberry Buck (courtesy of the good folks at Hendrick’s Gin)
Makes one strong cocktail
12 blueberries (defrosted if using frozen berries)
4 tablespoons good quality gin
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 tablespoons ginger beer
1-2 mint sprigs
Place the blueberries, gin and lemon juice in a measuring cup or shallow bowl. Muddle everything together (I like to use an immersion blender for this), until every single blueberry is crushed beyond recognition.
Fill a chilled glass with ice cubes. Strain the blueberry-gin mixture over the ice.
Pour over the ginger beer, give everything a good stir, and garnish with mint to serve.