Don’t let the name of my daily Belizean frozen rum drink put you off. This cocktail of blended fruit, ice and rum is delicious. It’s also the best way to use up fresh fruit, such as bananas and mangoes, that is too ripe and mushy to eat on its own.
The over-ripe fruit is also full of natural sugars, so you don’t need to add any sugar or syrup. And a thorough blending renders it extra smooth. You can switch it up by adding any fruit you fancy (papaya, pineapple), or pour in coconut water or coconut milk for more of a pina colada taste. It’s pretty scary how quickly these go down when you are poolside or swinging in a hammock on a dock on Ambergris Caye!
Fruity deliciousness in a cup. This is how we get out daily intake of Vitamin C! You can make a virgin version for the kids.
Rotten Fruit Rummy
- 2 over-ripe bananas
- 2 small, mushy yellow mangoes
- 2-3 cups watermelon
- 1 cup or so One Barrel Rum
- 1-2 cups mixed tropical fruit juice
- 12 ice cubes
- Garnish: hibiscus flower
Method: Add ingredients into a blender and blend until thoroughly combined. Pour into daiquiri cups and garnish with a hibiscus flower.
Here’s a rummy cocktail to get your weekend started. It comes courtesy of Jamaican rum Appleton Estate, which has just debuted new packaging and new naming for its core rums.
New packaging and naming on the Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old.
What remains the same is the good stuff inside the bottle, still as smooth and robust as a golden rum should be. I sampled the Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old, a sweet, fruity, woody number with hints of molasses and even coffee. I mixed it into two cocktails, the Estate Old Fashioned for Blake and a Jamaican Honey Soother for me.
Initially Blake felt his Old Fashioned tasted too “rummy” (he likes them with whisky), but as the ice diluted the drink it grew on him. On the other hand, I immediately liked my Jamaican Honey Soother — which reminds me of my favourite African cocktail, the Dawa (whose name means “medicine” in Swahili) — but is made with rum instead of vodka. Sweet, tart and most of all, strong, this “Jamaican Dawa” will indeed cure what ails you.
I’ve taken to calling this drink a “Jamaican Dawa” after my favourite African cocktail.
Jamaican Honey Soother
- 2 oz Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old
- 1/4 oz honey
- 1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
Method: Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well, then strain into a coupette glass and serve.
— Recipe courtesy Appleton Estate
It’s officially BC blueberry season, and I have been stuffing my face with gobs of them this week. Representatives from the British Columbia Blueberry Council visited Calgary on Tuesday, packing with them cases of the little blue fruit. But don’t fret — you don’t have to drive west to get your hands on the plump berries. You can find BC blueberries in supermarkets, farmers’ markets and produce centres all over Calgary.
I’m excited to add my new berry bounty to morning shakes, sprinkle them atop yogurt snacks and toss them into kale salads. With the weekend looming, I’m muddling them into mojitos.
The Blueberry Elderflower Mojito was inspired by a raspberry mojito I tried at Island Lake Lodge earlier this month (I’ll be sharing that recipe in my Spirited Calgary column in the Calgary Herald on Aug. 8). Blueberries add a pretty colour, sweetness and antioxidant hit to this twist on a traditional mojito. Enjoy!
This long, refreshing mojito is sweetened by blueberries, St-Germain and a dollop of simple syrup. Divine!
Blueberry Elderflower Mojito
- 5 large mint leaves
- 2 bar spoons fresh BC blueberries
- 1 oz fresh lime juice
- 1/2 oz simple syrup (1:1 sugar to water ratio)
- 1 oz light rum (I used Brugal Extra Dry)
- 1/2 oz St-Germain
- Top soda water
- Garnish: 5 fresh BC blueberries and a mint sprig
Method: In the base of a Collins glass, muddle mint and blueberries with lime juice and simple syrup. Add rum and St-Germain. Add ice cubes, stir, then top with soda water (2 to 3 oz, or to taste). Garnish with more blueberries and a mint sprig.
I’m still on tropics time and wanted to reintroduce your taste buds to a smooth and creamy classic: the Pina Colada. Banish from your memory the frozen Bacardi pre-mixed Pina Colada canisters popular in the ’80s. Those blended abominations were too sweet and tasted of artificial coconut.
The real deal, however, made with coconut cream, pineapple juice and rum, is delightful, especially if you’re enjoying it al fresco in Costa Rica. Oh, and the climate there is perfect for a blended, boozy coconut-flavoured slushie. We enjoyed this drink on the patio at Gingerbread restaurant in Nuevo Arenal. I didn’t get their recipe, but I searched up a great one, below.
Yes, I like Pina Coladas. Getting caught in the rain? Not so much…
- 1-1/2 oz coconut cream
- 1-1/2 oz pineapple juice
- 1 oz aged rum
- 1 oz coconut rum
- Splash coconut milk (optional)
- Garnish: Pineapple wedge
Method: Combine all ingredients (except garnish) in a blender. Add 1 cup of ice and blend until smooth. Pour contents into a hurricane glass and garnish with a pineapple wedge.
— Recipe courtesy Epicurious
Here’s a tropical cocktail named for my friend Robin, who we’re travelling with in Costa Rica. I was tasked one evening with making her a fruity drink that didn’t have gin in it. So, I added some Dos Pinos Mixto de Frutas to a shot of Fleur de Cana rum, squeezed in some lime and ended up with this splendid cocktail, which Avery aptly called the Rumbin.
This fruity rum drink is best enjoyed by a waterfall in Costa Rica.
- 1-1/2 oz rum
- 3 oz mixed fruit juice (Dos Pinos is a combination of pineapple, papaya, mango, banana and orange juice)
- Squeeze lime
- Garnish: Tropical flower
Method: Build in a tall glass over ice and garnish with a tropical flower.
Back in the late 1980s I used to throw a “Dacqueri” party at my house every summer when my parents were out of town. I don’t know what’s worse: the fact that I misspelled the word daiquiri on party invitations, or that my daiquiris — being too-sweet and neon-coloured and slushy — were, in fact, poor shadows of Cuba’s classic cocktail.
And don’t get me started on the misplaced apostrophe! (But I love this invite and the fact that I drew my dad serving beer from a keg.)
Of course, my high school pals drank my “dacqueri’s” anyway and didn’t seem to care that they were abominations. I blame it on the 80s. And my poncho from Mexico. And also those frozen Bacardi mixer canisters you could buy at Safeway (just add rum!).
Contents of the yellow cup? Neon-pink strawberry “dacqueri”. (Please excuse the photo resolution — it’s what happens when you take a photo of an old Kodak print with your iPhone.)
The good news is I finally have a chance to redeem myself a quarter century later through the written word. I’m writing about real daiquiris for an upcoming issue of up! magazine, and it’s given me a grand excuse to learn about the tropical tipple and try my hand at making this simple sip.
And simple, it is. Lime juice, granulated sugar (or simple syrup) and aged white rum. Since I love sours I took the liberty of adding egg white to help bind the ingredients and smooth out the flavours. Not only is the resulting daiquiri sour perfectly balanced between strong, sweet and sour, it looks much better served in a martini glass.
In my opinion, adding egg white to the classic daiquiri smooths out its edges and helps the flavours co-mingle.
Classic Daiquiri Sour
- 2 oz Havana Club 3-Year-old white rum
- 3/4 oz fresh lime juice
- 1/2 oz simple syrup
- 1/2 oz egg white
Method: Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with two ice cubes and shake until ice has dissolved and shaker feels heavy. Pout contents into a coupe glass or martini glass.
This week’s unusually-named cocktail comes courtesy of Model Milk’s David Bain, the winner of last week’s Mount Gay rum cocktail competition organized by Mount Gay’s Canadian distributor, Select Wines & Spirits, and held at Briggs Kitchen + Bar in Calgary. Bain’s delicious libation, basically a rum cherry sour, is named for the sugarcane field burning that takes place before harvesting the cane, to make the process easier and require less manual labour. What’s the connection? Rum is made by distilling sugarcane byproducts such as molasses and sugarcane juice. So, The Fields are Burning is, in a sense, a nod to the spirit’s storied history — and to this cocktail’s surprising, smoky taste.
This delish drink, basically a rum cherry sour, won the Mount Gay rum cocktail competition in Calgary last week.
I am partial to sours — I love how the egg white smooths out a drink’s rough edges and helps combine ingredients. I am also loving cherry sours, as a recent post attests. There’s something about cherry that plays well with dark spirits, from rye to tequila, and rum is no exception. But what really makes Bain’s drink stand out is the smoky flavour. He captures this essence with his simple syrup, and also by setting the coup glass atop a smouldering stave from a bourbon barrel, to infuse the glass before pouring in the cocktail. Yes, setting the stave afire was a bit gimmicky, but trust me, this cocktail’s scrumptious taste is not all smoke and mirrors.
The Fields are Burning
- 1-1/2 oz Mount Gay Eclipse
- 1/2 oz Ginja D’Obidos cherry liqueur
- 1 barspoon Pimento Dram (allspice liqueur)
- Dash Peychaud’s bitters
- 1/2 oz smoked black tea simple syrup (recipe not available)
- 1 oz fresh lemon juice
- 1 egg white
- Lemon grass ash garnish (chop up some lemon grass, then torch it for 40 minutes until it turns into a fine ash)
Combine all ingredients except lemon grass ash into a cocktail shaker. Dry shake to emulsify egg, then add ice and shake again. Strain into a 6 oz coup glass, or cylindrical coup glass, if available. Sprinkle lemon grass ash atop foam and serve.
— Recipe courtesy David Bain, Model Milk