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Make This: A Dry Sparkling Cucumber “Spa Water” Mocktail

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Cocktails

Six Easy Drink Garnishes Your Guests Will Love

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Garnishes are the ‘jewelry’ of a drink – they help make a statement, but a little can go a long way. 

Here are some easy-to-do accents for any beverage you’re serving.

ROSEMARY SKEWERED PEACH

When I look for rosemary at the grocery store, I always seek out the longest spears possible. (Even better, plant it in your yard! It smells amazing and grows to be sturdy and plentify.) In the case of this peach bellini mocktail, I used a chopstick to poke a small hole in a peach or nectarine slice, and pull the rosemary through! It always draws a gasp from anyone who grabs a glass.

APPLES, SLICED, SKEWERED AND SWIRLED

This is so easy. With the help of a skewer, just a simple twist of stacked apples turns into something simple, delicious and eye catching.

EDIBLE FLOWERS, TWO WAYS

Edible flowers can be bought online or at some grocery stores (I often see them in the herb section at whole foods.) Don’t by them from the flower section, as they often have insecticides on them.

Once you find them, drizzling a few on top (don’t overdo it – they’re more attractive than they are flavorfulor poking through a piece of dried fruit can take your drink to the next level! (Or, buy edible food glue (bake shops and amazon) and attach them to the rim or the fruit directly. In one case here, the drink is further enhanced with a crushed candy powder rim. The second drink, below is from Domingo in San Antonio, and it’s a delicious combo of tamarind soda, tequila, and more.


CUKES AND CUBES

When I really wanted to take spa water to the next level, I decided to cut a cucumber into squares, hence the name ‘cuke cubes’. But the simple stunner here is when you take an english cucumber (they’re long and wrapped in plastic at the store because their thing is skin and delicate – and use a vegetable peeler to create a long strip. Layer into a scroll and skewer it… carefully unfold it a bit and you’ve got an eye catching garnish!

HERB IT UP

There’s something beautiful about a sprig of a dry herb resting on a cocktail glass. In this case, thai basil, but a sprig of lavender or thyme also look distinctive resting on top of a foamy drink, plus a slice of lime, takes the drink to the next level. In this case, a partially salted rim rounds out the flavor profile. This cocktail is from the Weho Bistro and I won’t soon forget it.

I hope a few of these inspire you to try something new with your mocktails and cocktails!

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Appetizers

These French Onion Soup Dumplings Are Easy and DELISH

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I can’t tell you how good theses are. I tried them at a restaurant and couldn’t stop thinking about them! So I figured out how to make them. It was remarkably easy for something so popping with flavor!

If you have any questions, email or DM me on TikTok! Hope you enjoy!

@brianbalthazar These FRENCH ONION SOUP DUMPLINGS are so EASY and SO DELISH! #food #cooking #foodtiktok ♬ original sound – Brian Balthazar

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Dinner

Make Scallops More! Here’s How… Including A Cheesy Cauliflower Puree That’s A Gamechanger.

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Serving scallops is elegant. Cooking them is remarkably simple. Add in this cauliflower puree and you’ll wow everyone.

It’s well documented that my pet peeve is food blogs that ramble on excessively about the food when we all know you just want the recipe. So I’ll try and keep this concise. This is delicious. 

  • Few people seem to serve scallops at a dinner party. But they’re incredibly easy to prepare and when done right (not overcooked) and spiced simply, they are a crowd pleaser.
  • I like to serve scallops as a first course or an appetizer. A few of these set a nice tone for the rest of the meal, making everything seem a little elevated.
  • I love a smear or spread of some sort of puree under the scallops. Here I feature cauliflower, but the add-ins give this a delightful creamy, savory taste that will win over even those who dread the vegetable. But that said, if cauliflower isn’t your thing, substitute it with two 12 ounce bags of frozen peas and all the same extra ingredients.

Hope you enjoy!

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