Monday, August 11, 2008

Of Mojitos and Gratitude

Sometimes when you go on vacation, you have a few drinks, get some sun, return home, and go right back to work. Other times, you return home, log on to your tiny website, see that a last-minute Simpsons post garnered 75,000 hits, and kind of choke on your tongue. (And still other times, you keep referring to yourself in third person, which makes you want to punch yourself in the face.)

So - WHOA, and thank you to …

…Karen Datko of MSN Smart Spending, amysm the Metafilter poster, and everyone who linked and/or visited. The response was wonderful, and it was great to see so many more Simpsons quotes in the comments.

Jaime, Leigh and Rachel, who covered CHG while I was away. They are classy, classy ladies who wield the spatula with righteous fury and wonder. (Incidentally, I made Rach’s Flank Steak recipe for the folks in North Carolina. They died, went to heaven, saw there was no additional flank steak, and came back to spread its legend.)

…CC Sabathia, who pitched his fourth complete game for the Brewers, temporarily rescuing my fantasy baseball team from terrible oblivion.

…My right eye, which held off on contracting conjunctivitis until I arrived home.

…My left eye, which has not yet contracted conjunctivitis.

…Ma, Pa, D, and R, who showed me that “Irish” and “beach” don’t necessarily connote “life-ending sunburn.”

…J and L, who I TOTALLY SCHOOLED in Scrabble.

…Um, I mean … J and L, accomplished spellers who graciously allowed me to score slightly higher than them in several very tight games of Scrabble.

…The Boyfriend, who made these light, summery mojitos last Friday evening. He pulled them off a site called Mojito Company and followed the recipe almost to a tee, eliminating only the bitters. At $1.42 a pop, they’re $3.58 less than the average Happy Hour special, and at 179 calories each, they’re a better bet than Pina Coladas, Frozen Margaritas, and 48 billion other mixed drinks. We sipped them while taking in the Opening Ceremonies, and they proved the perfect accompaniment to A) cultural spectacle, B) really neat fireworks, and C) wondering if the little boy who walked in with Yao Ming was his own, very large four-month-old baby.

So, drink away! (And please excuse the delays while I get caught up this week. It might be a little while before everything’s back on track.)

The Miami Mojito (Mojito with Simple Syrup)
Makes 1 drink
Adapted from The Mojito Company.

½ lime, quartered (3 lime wedges)
5-6 fresh mint leaves
Crushed Ice
2 ounces White/light rum
1 ounce simple syrup*
3 ounces Club Soda

* Simple Sugar Syrup:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

1) Combine water and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to boil. Cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves, about 2 or 3 minutes. ("Water will appear slightly cloudy, but will become clear as it cools.") Let sit and come down to room temp. (We're only making one drink here, but you can store this in the fridge for future use. According the original recipe, it's good for around 12 mojitos.)

2) Place lime and mint in a big glass. Muddle. Pour in light rum, simple syrup, and bitters. Add ice until it reaches the top of the glass. Pour in club soda. Shake the mixture for a few seconds. (Use a shaker or cover the glass with something that will prevent spillage.) Top with a lime wedge, some mint, and the sugar cane if you have it.

Approximate Calories, Fat, and Price Per Serving
179 calories, 0 g fat, $1.42

½ lime, quartered (3 lime wedges): 7 calories, 0 g fat, $0.13
5-6 fresh mint leaves: 3 calories, 0 g fat, $0.08
Crushed Ice: negligible calories and fat, $0.00
2 ounces White/light rum: 131 calories, 0 g fat, $1.12
1 ounce simple syrup (1/12th batch): 38 calories, 0 g fat, $0.05
3 ounces Club Soda: negligible calories and fat, $0.04
TOTAL: 179 calories, 0 g fat, $1.42


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