Sarah and Dulcie's seasonal recipes don't stop at fork-friendly foods on their Two Tarts blog. In their new column, Locally Mixed, they expand on their interest in scratch-made sippables, and prove that cocktails are just as deserving of fresh, local flavors.
This week, Sarah and Dulcie turn to whiskey and honey to make sense of the mysterious kumquat.
I am willing to bet that I'm not alone in picking up a handful of kumquats at the store and then simply not knowing what to do with them when I get home. Just what are they anyway? They seem to be tiny little oranges in reverse, with a sweet citrus peel and a tart center. But whether or not they are even a citrus fruit seems to be up for debate. Let us assure you, once you mix up your kumquats with some Stranahan's whiskey, you won't care at all about the botanical history of these enigmatic little fruits.
Now that you know you are going to put your kumquats to good use in a cocktail, let's consider the sour mix. It only takes a momentary glance at the label of a store-bought sour mix to know that it just won't do. High fructose syrup is generally the leading ingredient, and many other questionable ingredients follow suit. But here's the thing: it is so easy to make your own. We have even simplified it further by substituting honey (local, of course!) and a dash of water for simple syrup. Give it a whir in the food processor with the kumquats and you are almost there.
We've been hearing about Denver-based Stranahan's Distillery for a long time. Leading the microdistillery movement in this region, Stranahan's has made a name for themselves with their smooth, small-batch whiskey. We were won over by the gorgeous amber color and sweet, oaky flavor. It pairs perfectly with the citrus tang and honey warmth in this cocktail. Not sure how you feel about whiskey? Try this one; you might surprise yourself.
Makes 2 cocktails
6 kumquats (plus extra for garnish)
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon water
3 ounces Stranahan's whiskey
Like this post? See Sarah and Dulcie's previous topic: Vanilla Citrus Cocktail.
All photos by Sarah Welle and Dulcie Wilcox.
Sarah and Dulcie run the blog Two Tarts, which specializes in delicious recipes and cocktails using local and seasonal ingredients.