Saturday in the Park

It’s Spring Break here at The Blind Pig household.  We definitely have Spring Fever, and we are looking forward to a much needed break.  To kick back and relax this week we have an easy, tasty, fresh cocktail to share with you that is as effortless  as a Saturday in the Park.  It is light, refreshing, and the perfect cocktail for a little day drinking on the porch or patio.

To make this refreshing cocktail you will need a few fresh ingredients: fresh squeezed lemon juice, cucumber, strawberries, and basil.  You will also need some rye whiskey, simple syrup, and some diet ginger ale.

To start, muddle a slice of cucumber, a strawberry, and a basil leaf in the bottom of a shaker.

Pour in simple syrup, rye whiskey and fresh squeezed lemon juice. Add ice and  shake for 15 seconds.

Prep a tall thin glass with ice and lemon peel.  Double strain cocktail into serving glass.  Top off with diet ginger ale. (We like to use diet ginger ale to cut down on the calories, and to prevent the drink from tasting too sweet.) Garnish with strawberry and cucumber and pretty paper straw.

Upon taking your first sip, you will notice the initial sweetness of the rye whiskey with the basil and strawberry.  The drink finishes off with a delicious refreshing surprise of the cucumber.  It is like drinking spring from a glass.

If you are viewing this post via email, visit us at http://www.theblindpig.blog for a full printable recipe of Saturday in the Park.

Sip this drink on a Saturday or on a Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, we don’t care.  However, do tell us if you tried it and liked it!  Special thanks to our friend Dawnette for the beautiful flowers we used as the backdrop and for tasting with us.  Special thanks to Blind Piglet #2 who helped with some of the photography for this post.

 

Diclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

You Asked, We Answered

We love hearing from our readers through Facebook, Instagram and especially in person.  We have so much fun creating our blog posts and hope that you look forward to receiving them in your inbox each week.  This week we are taking a break from sharing more recipes with you to answer some commonly asked questions about The Blind Pig Blog.

  1.  What do you do with all of the drinks and food that you create for the blog?  That’s an easy answer… we drink and eat them.  Many of the drinks and recipes that we make for the blog have made it into our regular rotation.  We love to share the food we make on the blog with friends and family, so what are you doing next Friday?
  2. Does everything you make contain “The Blind Pig” twist?  No.  We make plenty of food and drinks on a daily basis that do not contain extra libations at all.  In fact, when we are not cooking things up for TBPBlog we try to eat fairly healthy.  Actually, Blind Piglet #2 prefers recipes that we make without a twist.
  3. Do all of the recipes and concoctions you make get featured on TBPBlog? No.  We try all of our recipes out at home before posting.  Many of the recipes we try get tweaked and adjusted before making it to the blog.  Some we try and nix altogether.  Some recipes we prepped, took photos, and then never made it into the queue.  We try to bring you relevant recipes with current trends and if we just don’t feel confident with a recipe, we don’t post it.
  4. Do you get paid to feature certain products on your blog?  Not currently.  Everything that we feature on our blog is because we believe in the quality of the product.  We like to feature products from smaller companies when we can.  When our blog grows up and we get the opportunity to be paid for a feature, we will be sure to be transparent about it with our readers.
  5. How do you decide what you want to blog about?  We think about what kind of entertaining our readers may be planning for in the near future.  If there is an upcoming holiday, we want to give you some ideas to serve your guests.  Throughout the year we are on the lookout for ideas to include in the blog.  Rhonda has a huge file of recipes that she has kept throughout the years.  When we need some inspiration we look through Rhonda’s files.  When we find something that interests us, we play with the recipe and tweak it to make it relevant and current.
  6. What is your favorite ingredient to use in TBPBlog posts?  For Rhonda it is Kerrygold Irish Cream.  The chocolate flavor makes it so easy to add to many dessert recipes, and we have been surprised how easy it is to incorporate into other things.
  7. What is your go-to drink when you are out and about?  Craig hands down loves to drink anything with Fernet Branca or Fernet and Coke.  He orders it everywhere we go.  Rhonda’s go-to drinks are usually a Templeton Rye and Ginger Beer (Maryann or Ginger) or a Correlajeo Skinny Agave Margarita.  It’s just easy to order and most bars are able to make it.
  8. Where is your favorite place to go out and have a drink?  Craig’s favorite place is Sable Kitchen and Bar in downtown Chicago at the Kimpton Hotel.  Rhonda’s favorite place is Village Burger Bar.  They have really good Corralejo Margaritas and I love their sweet potato fries.  Really she just loves anywhere with a great patio and fire pit.
  9. What have been your favorite posts?  Choosing a favorite post is a lot like choosing your favorite child. It’s difficult to pick just one. (Don’t tell, but Blind Piglet #3 is our fav.  Shhhh!) We do have a few favorites, though.  Some of the posts that are special to us are because of things that were going on in the background when we were prepping or taking photos.

Rhonda’s Favs:

  • Corralejo Skinny Agave Margarita:  This was our first official post and some of Rhonda’s girlfriends came over to help us kick off the post.
  • The Watermelon Wars:  Both of these drinks are delicious and it truly was a war between us to decide which recipe was better.
  • Mary Ann or Ginger:  To this day, this is still my go-to drink when out and about.
  • Golden Mint Crinkles:  This cookie recipe was a family favorite to begin with, and we were able to make it even better.
  • Salted Whiskey Caramel Corn:  We had a lot of activity in the house the weekend we made this post.  This post always makes me think of warmth, family, and home.  Not to mention all of the caramel corn was gone within two hours of the photo shoot.
  • Tequila Ceviche: We used this recipe all summer long.  It was so easy, tasty and fresh.
  • There are more, but we don’t want to bore you.

Craig’s favs:

Still have more questions?  Bring it on.  We would love to answer them!

Are you following us on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram?  If not, use the links below! Have an awesome week.  Next week we will be back with more yummy recipes for your taste buds and tummy with a February flair.  Love is in the air!

  

Disclaimer:  All beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

Pecan Whiskey Ice Cream

pecan whiskey ice cream

We have a soft cold spot in our stomachs for ice cream.  It is one of our family’s favorite treats and desserts. (Kerrygold Ice Cream, Cafe Bourghetti PBIF Pie, Choco Menta Shake, Mojito Ice Cream, Tequila Strawberry Lime Ice Cream Pie) For a final farewell to summer, we wanted to share with you a delectable grown-up dessert: Pecan Whiskey Ice Cream.  When you see how easy this treat is to make, you will want to scream for more– ice cream that is!

To make this you need only a few simple ingredients — vanilla ice cream, toasted pecans, and Templeton Rye Whiskey.  That’s it — only 3 things.

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First you will need to toast the pecans.  We placed ours on a cookie sheet and placed the oven on broil.  You need to leave the pecans in the oven for about 5 minutes.  If they stay too long, they will burn.

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Stir together 1 quart of softened vanilla ice cream, toasted pecans and 1/4 cup of whiskey.  Place back in the freezer until hardened or at least a couple of hours.  Serve to friends.  Yummo!

pecan whiskey ice cream3

If you are viewing this post in your email, you will want to visit us at www.theblindpig.blog to get a printable version of this recipe.

The rye whiskey has a sweet flavor that pairs nicely with the vanilla ice cream.  This dessert goes down smooth.  Will you make the world’s easiest dessert this weekend?  Let us know if you do.

  

Rye Rye Miss American Pie

caramel rye pieHey friends, how was your weekend?  We are behind on getting our post for this week published because our weekend was C-R-A-Z-Y busy!  We had soccer games with Piglet #2 and a hockey party at our house for Piglet #3, plus all of the regular this and that we do on a weekend.

However, we are excited to share our new gem-of-a-dessert with you:  Caramel Rye Pie.  The deliciousness of salted caramel with a twist of rye whiskey makes this dessert your new “go-to” for guests.  We had the pleasure of sharing this pie with the charming and beautiful Baxtley family as they joined us for dinner one evening.  One word of warning, though – this pie is sweet and rich.  ( Actually that is more than one word.  Oops.)

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Prepare a Pillsbury pie crust according to package directions.  Let the crust cool for an hour.

While the pie crust is baking and cooling, you can make the salted caramel sauce.   Bring sugar and water to a boil in a medium saucepan.  Cook the sugar and water without stirring until the mixture is a deep amber color.  Be patient with this part it takes a little while.

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Remove from heat.  This next part is a little tricky.  You will want to use a long handled whisk, but even with that, the steam can still get you.  Work cautiously.  Gradually whisk cream into the caramel mixture until smooth.  Next whisk the whiskey (Funny right?  “Whisk the whiskey!”)  and salt into the caramel.  Let the sauce cool for a minimum of 30 minutes.  It can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month.  We had plenty left over and have been using it for ice cream sundaes!

Next prepare the filling.  Whisk together egg yolks, cornstarch and 1/4 cup of half-and-half in a medium bowl.

rye pie2

Stir together brown sugar, salt and remaining half-and-half in a large sauce pan.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Remove from heat and slowly whisk hot brown sugar mixture into the egg yolk mixture.  Return the mixture to the saucepan.  Cook over medium heat whisking constantly and making sure to reach all of the bottom of the pan.  Boil whisking constantly for 1 minute.  Remove from heat and whisk in butter pieces, whiskey and vanilla.  Cool for 30 minutes.

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The filling becomes very thick as it cools.

Spoon filling into cooled pie crust, and chill for at least 4 hours.

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About an hour before serving, prepare whipped cream topping.  Spread whipped cream over the top of the pie.  Real whipped cream is a treat, but can be difficult to work with.  You can substitute whipped cream with Cool-Whip for the topping, and you may have a better result than we did.

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When ready to serve, drizzle caramel sauce over the top of the pie.  Delish!

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If you are viewing this post in an email, you will need to visit our site to view and download the recipe.

Are you ready to try Caramel Rye Pie?  Make sure to let us know if you do.  We’d love to hear about it!

Enjoy your week.  Can you believe that it is August already?  Eeek!

  

Bonus Post: Templeton Whiskey Cake

 

Templeton Whiskey CakeIt is bonus post time!  Since we missed posting an extra post in March, we are making up for it with a doubly delectable post in April — Templeton Whiskey Cake.

Rhonda originally found this recipe in the March 2017 Southern Living Magazine.  After a few minor changes, it has become Templeton Whiskey Cake.  This cake combines some interesting flavors of coffee, Templeton Rye Whiskey and bittersweet chocolate chips.  Templeton Whiskey Cake takes a little more effort than our usual easy, tasty, fresh recipes, but it is well worth the extra time!  If you are planning a celebration for someone special, we recommend you try out this recipe.  Besides, it is chocolate, and you can’t go wrong with chocolate!

templeton whiskey cake3

You begin this cake by making the ganache first.  It is important to note that the ganache needs 8 hours or overnight to sit at room temperature.  Unfortunately, when we made this cake, we didn’t have the luxury of time.  Our ganache could have used it.

Begin by preparing a chocolate-caramel ganache.  Stir together chocolate chips, corn syrup, and Templeton Rye. Set aside.

Next stir together sugar, cold water, and cream of tartar in a large, heavy saucepan.  Cook over medium, swirling pan until sugar dissolves and starts to change color.  Increase heat to high and cook until mixture is a rich, golden caramel color, 4 to 5 minutes. At first we were a little skeptical, but after heat and stirring, the sugar mixture did turn in to caramel.

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After heating the caramel, you will blend the chocolate and caramel together. Then let the ganache sit.

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Next you will begin to prepare the cake.  The addition of a cup and half of dark coffee gives this cake an amazing flavor and aroma.  Yummy!

After mixing the remaining ingredients, you bake the cake for 20-25 minutes.  Cool the cake completely.

Once cooled, place one layer of the cake on a serving plate and spread with a cup of ganache. Add the second layer of the cake and spread another cup of ganache on top, and cover sides.  Top off the cake with fresh berries.  Let stand at room temperature until ready to serve or place in the refrigerator overnight.

templeton whiskey cake5

This cake was a moist and delicious treat.  The berries are an added bonus that compliments the rich chocolate ganache.  We had some ganache leftover, so we saved it and drizzled it over fresh berries a week later. Yummo!

If you are reading this post through an email, click on the website to view the complete recipe.

What do you think about our Templeton Whiskey Cake?  Give it a try, and let us know about it.

 

Classic Boulevardier

classic boulevardier

Hey friends.  For those of you who are new to our blog, welcome.  We are glad you stopped by.  To our loyal followers, we hope you have some Beer Brisket cooking in your crockpot for the big game on Sunday night.  This week we are going back to classic cocktails to give you two great ways to make a Boulevardier.

The word boulevardier, according to Webster’s Dictionary, refers to men who were worldly and socially active.  The first boulevardiers got their name from the thoroughfares they frequented: the boulevards of Paris.  Unlike many nicknames, “boulevardier” is generally a complimentary term. It is quite fitting that this term refers to men, because the boulevardier drink is usually a drink that appeals to men over women.  Craig loves Boulevardiers — Rhonda not so much.  They are very alcohol forward, but a great crowd pleaser for those who want a classic cocktail vibe.

Here’s how we make ours.  We made a large batch for a party that we hosted.  We started it two weeks prior to the party, so the flavors had plenty of time to blend and mature prior to serving.

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Templeton Rye, Carpano Antica Formula, and Campari are needed to make a Classic Boulevardier.

We used our infusion barrel.  Prior to using a barrel like this, make sure to fill it and soak it in water for a few hours.  You want the wood to expand and seal against itself.  Otherwise, you will have your drink leaking everywhere, and you don’t want that!

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We filled the barrel with 1 liter of Templeton Rye Whiskey.  Rye whiskey is a key ingredient in a Classic Boulevardier.  You don’t want any whiskey other than rye.  Next add 1 liter of Carpano Antica Formula.  We shared Carpano Antica with you back when we made our Sangria. Next add 750 milliliters of Campari, and finally add in about a teaspoon of Angostura bitters.

Most barrels do not have large openings, so make sure you have a funnel handy for pouring the liquor.  You can also use the funnel pour spouts like we have in the photos.  After two weeks, pour in a rocks glass and serve with a single large cube of ice. Sip slowly and enjoy.

boulevardier cube

Classic Boulevardier

Want to try the drink, but don’t want to make a large batch?  We have the single serve recipe here.

Print Classic Boulevardier

Classic Boulevardier

  • 1 ounce Carpano Antica Formula
  • 1 ounce Templeton Rye Whiskey
  • 3/4  ounce of Campari
  • dash of Angostura Bitters

Stir and pour into a rocks glass.  Serve.

Thanks for stopping by our blog.  If you want to have our recipes and ideas come straight to your inbox, use the subscribe menu below.  Look for us on Pinterest and Instagram.  We hope you visit us next week, when we share something sweet and expressive for Valentine’s Day!

 

DISCLAIMER: THE BEVERAGES ON THIS SITE ARE MEANT FOR ADULTS 21 YEARS AND OLDER.  WE DO NOT SUPPORT OR ENCOURAGE UNDERAGE DRINKING.  ALWAYS DRINK RESPONSIBLY AND NEVER DRINK AND DRIVE.