Summertime Vodka Lemonade Fizz

June 23, 2012

A couple of weeks ago, while BigSis and I had our one afternoon at the beach, I finally had a few minutes to flip through my June issue of Sunset magazine. In it, I came across an article titled Wow ‘Em Cocktails that got me thinking it was time to come up with a new Summertime cocktail.

(I was going to do a Raspberry Fizz until I realized at the last minute that someone, not sure who yethad polished off my Chambord and didn’t tell me.  So, I’ll be posting that recipe a little later after I get the chance to pick up more Chambord.)

Since we just celebrated the first day of Summer this week, I was trying to think of something that goes hand in hand with Summer. And since I have a huge bowl of fresh-picked lemons that a friend gave me, staring me right in the face, it hit me!

Summertime Vodka Lemonade


And no; not just Plain Jane lemonade.

Let’s kick it up a notch and make some Vodka Lemonade! Sound yummy?

It. Was.

Summertime Vodka Lemonade

Summertime Vodka Lemonade Fizz

4 oz. fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 shot vodka
1/2 t. sugar
1 or 2 ounces of club soda
lemon and strawberry slices

This is super simple. Just squeeze the lemons and stir in the sugar until it’s dissolved. Add the vodka. Put some lemon and strawberry slices in with the ice and pour the lemonade over the ice. Top with club soda and garnish with lemon.

Since I’m serving this poolside, I’ve used a cute plastic wine glass for my lemonade.

Note: This is pretty tart. Since I don’t really care for sugary sweet cocktails, I put very little sugar in my concoction, but you could easily add more sugar to suit your own little taste buds.

Enjoy! :-)


Candy Corn Martini

October 31, 2011

Candy Corn Martini

Like sweet drinks?

If you do, then I think you’ll really enjoy this drink, but, if you also love candy corn like I do, then you’re going to love this drink! But, beware! It’s super sweet:-)

We’re celebrating Halloween here at Lil Sis’ house with a festive Candy Corn Martini. There are several different recipes floating around for this martini, but I started with Food Network’s Candy Corn Cordial Recipe and adapted it a little. Almost all of the recipes for this drink call for an egg white to create some froth on top, but I chose to leave that out.

I decided that the martini would look even more festive with some orange sugar around the rim, so I just made my own by mixing a few drops of red and yellow food color with several tablespoons of sugar.

Let me start by saying that I don’t have a sweet tooth and normally don’t eat candy or drink sweet drinks, but due to my obsession with candy corn, I had to try this one. I started out this Halloween season only buying one bag of candy corn to make these martinis, but on my last couple of trips to the store, I couldn’t resist when I saw the Indian Corn and the Autumn Mix.

I’m going to have to take all of this to work just to get it out of my pantry or I’ll be eating candy corn for months.

Brach's Candy

Now, let’s get to the Candy Corn Martini. This is a very simple cocktail to make; you just have to allow a few hours to infuse the vodka with the candy corn. Here’s all you need:

Candy Corn Martini Ingredients

Candy Corn Martini
(adapted from Food Network)

1/2 c. candy corn
1 c. vodka
2 oz. orange liqueur (I used Triple Sec)
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Candy corn for garnish
Red and yellow food coloring

Infuse the vodka: Combine the candy corn and vodka in an airtight container; set aside for at least 3 hours, then strain.

Make the martinis: Rub some lemon juice on the rim of the glass and turn the glass upside down into a plate of the orange colored sugar. Add 4 ounces of the candy corn vodka, the orange liqueur, and the lemon juice to a shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously for at least 30 seconds. Strain into 2 chilled martini glasses and garnish with candy corn.

Candy Corn Martini's




Cocktails and Concoctions

August 2, 2011


On the "Rocks"
On the “Rocks”

Doesn’t this look refreshing? I wish that I was sitting out by my pool with one of these in hand right now. :-)

I talked about this drink about this time last year after experimenting with the idea of putting pop rocks around the rim of a cocktail glass. This drink is something a little different and fun to make for a cookout or ‘get together’ with friends. This doesn’t have to be made in red and blue, you could use any color of mixer and/or pop rocks.

I’m sharing this again today to let everyone know that we’ve just added a Cocktails and Concoctions category to our Recipe page. We’ve started with a few of our favorites, including our Overnight Bloody Marys, which are perfect to make ahead for a brunch or a ‘get together’ with friends.  So, check it out and keep reading because we’ll be adding more concoctions very soon.

If anyone has a favorite summer-time cocktail or beverage that you think we should try, we’d love to hear from you!


Be Mine Martini

February 9, 2011

If you happen to be looking for a fun, festive cocktail to surprise your Valentine with next Monday for Valentine’s Day, then you’ve come to the right place! This Be Mine Martini is so simple that you can whip up for your Sweetheart in just a matter of minutes.

Be Mine Martini

If you’ve been reading BigSisLilSis for awhile, you know that I LOVE making festive cocktails for special occasions or holidays. If you’re new here, you can go to the related posts at the bottom of this post if you’d like to see some of the fun cocktails that I’ve concocted in the past.

So, let’s get started. This is all you need.

Be Mine Martini Ingredients

And, we can’t forget about the red heart-shaped ice cubes. I made mine with 100% Cranberry juice for a deep red color.

Be Mine Martini Ice cubes

Be Mine Martini

Slice of lime
red & pink sugar
2 oz. vodka (My favorite is Ketel One)
6 oz. club soda or seltzer water
red heart-shaped ice cubes
Chambord Liqueur

Coat the rim of the glass with lime juice, then turn glass upside down into plate of mixed red and pink sugar. You can put the vodka in a shaker with some ice and shake before straining into the glass if you prefer, but if the vodka is kept in the freezer, it’s not necessary.

Pour the chilled vodka in the glass and add the club soda or seltzer water. Drizzle a small amount of Chambord on top and lastly, add in 3 or 4 heart-shaped ice cubes.

(Note: this was a large martini glass, so if yours doesn’t hold 8 ounces, just use 1 part vodka to 3 parts soda or seltzer.)

We don’t go out for a big fancy, expensive dinner to celebrate Valentine’s Day and I’m not one who expects a dozen red roses or a box of chocolates either. We like to exchange cards, enjoy a nice, relaxing dinner at home, maybe with a fire in the fireplace, some good music, and a fun, festive cocktail.

That’s my idea of a perfect Valentine’s Day:-)

EuroCave Wine Cellars


On the “Rocks”

August 10, 2010

Last month I shared the Funfetti Firecracker Cupcake recipe with you for a fun way to turn cupcakes into little firecrackers. Here’s another way you can use those little exploding candies, Pop Rocks to liven up your next summer party. I made these fun cocktails for the 4th of July but they would also be very festive for a Labor Day party.

On the "Rocks"

On the “Rocks”
(adapted from Food Network Magazine July/August 2010)

Juice from half a lemon
Strawberry (red) Pop Rocks
1 part vodka
2 parts juice or mixer (I used Rose’s Blue Raspberry Mix)
1 part seltzer water or club soda

Pound the Pop Rocks packet before opening to crush the candies into smaller granules, then pour them out onto a plate. Next, just dampen the rims of the glasses with lemon juice and dip the rims in the candies.

So you don’t disturb the candies on the rim, just mix the vodka and juice, or mixer, in a shaker first and then pour over ice and add a splash of seltzer or club soda. Serve immediately as the Pop Rocks will start popping as soon as you put them on the rim.

Note: These also turn out really pretty using cranberry or pomegranate juice with the Tropical Punch (blue) Pop Rocks. (As pictured in Food Network Magazine.)

To make these for the kiddos, just eliminate the alcohol and use any color juice and Pop Rocks. These are so easy, it would even be fun to let the kids help make their own. :-)


Glowing Gecko Cocktail

March 16, 2010

Need an idea for a quick and easy, green and glowing cocktail for St. Patty’s Day? If so, I think you’ll like this one. It’s super quick and easy and looks really festive served up in a nice martini glass. This cocktail is a little on the sweet side for me but it’s always the hit of the party.

I’ve got just a teeny, tiny bit of Irish in the blood so maybe that’s part of the reason why I enjoy putting on a fun-filled St. Patty’s Day Party every year. SirHoney got the Irish genes from both his dad and mom so he’s a little more fond of corned beef, cabbage and potatoes than I am, but I’ll pacify him on this one day. I actually get to take a break from hosting the party this year.

One of my good friends is hosting the “shindig” at her house and she always throws a great party so I’ll have to make a conscious effort to “behave” since it falls on a work night this year. I don’t want to wake up Thursday morning with the “Glowing Gecko Cocktail” flu! (That could get ugly!)

I mentioned this cocktail last year when I talked about St. Patty’s Day Party ideas and I’ve served the original Glowing Gecko recipe at a couple of my parties but I decided to adapt the recipe a bit this year. I’ll be taking all the ‘fixins’ to my neighbor’s house so we can make this new version tomorrow night.

I’m not a big fan of rum and most of our friends aren’t rum drinkers either, so I eliminated the rum. And since we all know that Sweet & Sour mix is loaded with calories, I eliminated that also. Here’s my adapted concoction.

Glowing Gecko
(adapted from RecipeZaar)

2 oz. vodka
2 oz. Midori melon liqueur
1/2 oz. fresh squeezed lime juice or Rose’s lime juice
1 oz. club soda

Combine first three ingredients with ice in a shaker. Shake and strain. Serve either straight up or over ice in a martini glass. Pour in club soda and garnish with lime.

Have a safe and happy St. Patrick’s Day!


Overnight Bloody Marys

February 17, 2010

BigSis and I made this Bloody Mary recipe for a big family get-together on Thanksgiving about ten or twelve years ago. This recipe is perfect for a big party or a holiday celebration since you make it the day before and it makes a full gallon. I love anything that can be made ahead of time that helps eliminate last minute preparations.

With this already chilled in the frig, all you have to do the day of the party is stir in the vodka and you’re ready to serve to your guests as they arrive. It also comes in handy if the cooks get a little thirsty while working in the kitchen. :-)

This past Sunday, we had a big Valentine’s Day Brunch so I decided to make this recipe since we were serving a pretty big group of friends. I even ended up doubling the recipe. Since V-8 has more than enough sodium, I eliminated the regular salt and the Seasoned Salt from the recipe and just used one teaspoon of celery salt instead.

Overnight Bloody Marys
(adapted from 1994 edition of Southern Living “Our Best Christmas Recipes”)

1 46 oz can tomato juice
1 46 oz can V-8 (I used the Spicy)
1 c. lemon juice
1/2 c. water
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 t. celery salt
Frank’s Red Hot (to taste)
3 c. vodka

Combine first seven ingredients in container and stir well. Cover and chill at least 8 hours. Stir in vodka just before serving.

We set up a Bloody Mary bar with Tabasco, Frank’s Red Hot, celery sticks, green olives, pickle spears, horseradish, cocktail onions, and lemon and lime wedges so everyone could season and garnish their Bloody Mary to suit their own taste.

I won’t wait another ten years to make these again! :-)


Pomegranate Orangetini

December 4, 2009


(Sorry for the strange glare in the photo. I guess I should have made and photographed the cocktail at noon instead of 4 p.m. Then again, if I had started making and tasting these at noon, I might not have ended up with this post!)

Is it just me or does it seem like pomegranates have recently become the “in” thing? It’s true that they are loaded with more antioxidants than Cranberry Juice, Concord Grape Juice, and even Red Wine, but why are we suddenly hearing more about the health benefits of pomegranates? I dunno!

When we were kids, we had a friend in the neighborhood that had a Pomegranate tree and we used to eat them all the time, not knowing of course that they were good for us. (I could tell you about the birthmark on my leg that I thought for many years was a stain from a pomegranate seed, but you probably wouldn’t believe me.)

Anyway, BigSis and I were lucky enough to receive some trial bottles of POM Wonderful Pomegranate juice from the lovely people at POM Wonderful.  Honestly, these little bottles of POM juice in the produce section of my store have been tempting me for some time, so I’m glad to finally have the chance to try it. And, since I love a tart fruit, I love this juice.

It’s really great alone and can also be used as a substitute in a recipe like these Cherry-Pecan Meringue Bars, or even in a salad dressing, but I decided to try it out in a cocktail first. After talking it over with my friend, V, I decided to adapt a recipe of hers from a 2007 Outdoor Living to come up with this Pomegranate Orangetini.

I bet Santa would like to find one of these waiting for him alongside his plate of cookies!

Pomegrante Orangetini

Pomegranate Orangetini
(adapted from Outdoor Living 2007)

2 parts Pomegranate juice
1 part Vodka
splash Triple Sec
splash fresh lime juice
splash Fresca or Ginger Ale

Prepare a cocktail glass by wetting the rim with a lime and frosting it with sugar. Mix the first four ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice, strain into the prepared glass, top with a splash of Fresca or Ginger Ale and garnish with a lime slice.


Margaritas for Mother’s Day

May 9, 2009

For Mother’s Day, brunch is normally on the agenda for a lot of us moms. It’s just nice to have one day out of the year when you don’t feel guilty saying: “I’m not cooking today.  And, as a matter of fact, I’m not doing any laundry either!”

Most Mother’s Day Brunches include mimosas, too. But no one says you have to drink Mimosas on Mother’s Day. How about some Margaritas?  Food Network has over 100 great recipes for different varieties of Margaritas.

I think this Whole Citrus Margarita sounds nice because it just calls for fresh juices instead of a store bought mix.

Whole Citrus Margarita

Whole Citrus Margarita

If you’re not really in the mood for a tequila-filled Margarita, how about one of these treats for after dinner?

We love these Margarita Cupcakes from Recipe Girl.


Margarita Cupcakes

This Frozen Margarita Pie from Cookie Madness looks scrumptious!

Frozen Margarita Pie

Frozen Margarita Pie

This Key Lime Bundt Cake with Margarita Icing is another from Cookie Madness.

Key Lime Bundt Cake with Margarita Icing

Key Lime Bundt Cake with Margarita Icing

And the Margarita Cookies from Peanut Butter and Julie are adorable!

Too cute to eat!

Margarita Cookies

How about Margarita Ice Cream from Barefoot Kitchen Witch!

Decadent and refreshing at the same time!

Margarita Ice Cream

Whatever your plans are for Mother’s Day, we wish you a wonderful day!


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Election Day Cocktails

November 4, 2008

Plan on watching, and hopefully, celebrating this historic election with friends? If you’re like me, I always like to serve some “festive cocktails” for special occasions. There are some  great ideas for Election Day Cocktails on Simply Stated that your guests might enjoy while awaiting the election results. These two are quite colorful!

Election Day Cocktails

Election Day Cocktails



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