Cucumber Cranberry Cocktails

I spent half of Saturday and all day Sunday last weekend grinding spices because we were hosting an Indian feast! I’ve been all about Indian food lately and love being able to make healthier versions of our favorite dishes at home. It’s also the perfect cuisine to enjoy when you have vegetarian guests because there are so many yummy veggie options! I was particularly excited for this dinner party because our friend Willy is also a huge foodie and likes to experiment in the kitchen as much as I do. In fact, we decided to pick an ingredient and each make a secret dish with it, how fun is that? We settled on cucumbers and Willy made amazingly refreshing cucumber ice cream! I wanted to lick the bowl, it was that good. I decided to make a cucumber simple syrup after being inspired by a cucumber martini I recently had at Orleans, a bar in our neighborhood.

To make the syrup, all I did was let shredded cucumbers soak in the syrup until it cooled and then strained them out. I combined the syrup with gin, sparkling cranberry juice from Trader Joe’s, and a splash of lime juice. They were really fresh and delicious and I’m excited to play with the leftover cucumber simple syrup more too!

Also, congrats to the winners of my Girard’s Salad Dressing giveaway – Beverly, Rachel, Elina, Erica, and Sophia!

Cucumber Cranberry Cocktails
Printable Recipe

Ingredients:
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
1 cup shredded English cucumber, plus 6 slices for garnishes
1 cup gin
1 cup sparkling cranberry juice
1/2 cup fresh lime juice

Directions:
Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan and heat over medium high heat for 2 minutes or until liquid is boiling and sugar has dissolved. Stir in shredded cucumber and remove from heat. Allow simple syrup to cool to room temperature, about 1 hour, and strain cucumber out.

Combine 1 cup cucumber simple syrup with gin, sparkling cranberry juice, and lime juice and stir until well combined. Serve over ice and garnish with extra cucumber slices. Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition: 176 calories, 0g fat, 0.1g fiber, 0.1g protein per serving (calculated using 1 cup of simple syrup, I had a bit leftover!)
Cost: $0.63 per serving

43 Responses to Cucumber Cranberry Cocktails

  1. I have never cooked Indian food before but watching Aarti on Next Food Network Star has me totally wanting to try it in my kitchen! I hope you’ll be sharing some of your recipes on this blog!

  2. This sounds great.. we used to go to a Mexican restaurant that had cucumber margaritas! This cocktail sounds great and I may have to make Mountain Man try his hand at cucumber ice cream now!

  3. That sounds so refreshing Kerstin! I am with you on Indian food – I used to work with Indian people in my early 20’s – we did condo conversions and all the employees (except for me in the accounts receivable department) were Indian. I got a call from one of the tenants – his unit was overrun with roaches!

    I went to check it out, and he said they were coming from “that unit” who was the VP of the company – little did I know that they were Hindu so when they brought in a 20 pound bag of rice from the Indian grocery store that had roaches, it was against their religion to kill them!

    So Indian food = cockroaches to me for the longest time. That being said, one of my favorite dishes is chicken tikka masalad – I’ve probably made it a dozen times since I first tried it – the perfect amount of flavorful heat!

    http://biz319.wordpress.com/2010/03/09/more-indian-food/

  4. I absolutely love cucumber in cocktails. It’s incredibly refreshing and so crisp but I must say, I never would have thought to pair it with cranberry! I love the way you made the syrup. I’m thinking it would be fun to do something similar but juice the cucumber to make into a syrup for a slightly stronger flavor. Thanks so much for the inspiration!

    As a side note, I’m not sure if you have/had my blog in your RSS reader, but if so you may need to update the feed. I didn’t realize when I switched over to feedburner that my old subscribers would no longer be updated so just wanted to send out the FYI. I have the link to the new feed at the top of my blog. :-)

  5. What a fun idea to do with friends! I wish I had more foodie friends close by! I’ve been loving Indian flavors lately, too. And by lately, I mean the past 6 months 😉 Looks delicious! :)

  6. That sounds so refreshing — I love the idea of making cucumber simple syrup. In college, a friend of mine would make big pitchers of cucumber water. It was so perfect on really hot days.

  7. cucumber blends so well with fruity flavors- Great beverage! And wahoooooooo I am so excited about the win. I am the salad queen so this is perfect for me <3

  8. what great ways to use the mighty cucumber. Your cocktail is right up my alley and the ice cream sounds so unusual and delicious. I love that you guys had your own little competition!

  9. An Indian feast sounds like so much fun! We have been on an Indian kick lately – Trader Joe’s has some great Indian options that are semi-healthy :) Love the sound of this cocktail – very refreshing!

  10. I loved the cucumber sakitini I tried in Seattle a few years ago, so I am SURE that this will be equally as good! Can’t wait to make it for our next get together!

  11. Eastern Standard in Kenmore Square has a drink called the Sophisticated Madame, that I love! While looking for their recipe, I found yours, which sounds almost identical. So excited to try this out!!

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