So next time you go to the farmer’s market or to your garden, if you are so lucky, grab some extra basil. Taking a page from the whiskey sours I posted last time, we are going to do something similar but with gin and with the addition of fresh basil leaves. This is a great indian summer drink and a wonderful way to use up some of that fresh basil you have hanging around.
If you have a favorite gin, then, by all means use it. I have happened upon Boodles, which is relatively cheap and works for me. I occasionally buy more expensive gins when I want to experiment and feel a little flush.
As this drink, like the whiskey sour uses simple syrup, I’m going to use this blog as an excuse to talk a little more about simple syrup. So simple syrups are 1 part white sugar to 1 part water. You throw them both in a sauce pan and heat to a boil, stirring occasionally. And then remove from the heat and let cool. You are basically just dissolving the sugar in the water. I keep mine in a sterilized, (read: went through the dishwasher) recycled glass peanut butter jar in the refrigerator. I have found it will last well over a month that way. If it is clear and smells fine, it is fine. There are plenty of variations on simple syrups including “rich” simple syrups and flavored/infused simple syrups which I can’t wait to talk to you about soon.
So along with the gin and simple syrup, the other ingredients for our drink today are fresh lemon juice and 5-6 basil leaves per drink.
(recipe kindly shared by the Esquire Tavern of San Antonio)
Partially fill a shaker or clean jar with ice. Add:
5-6 whole basil leaves*
2 ounces of gin
3/4 ounce of fresh lemon juice
3/4 ounce of simple syrup (see recipe here)
Put lid or top on shaker and shake ingredients hard for 20-30 seconds. Strain into a chilled coupe/martini/wine glass.
The drink will have a beautiful basil-green hue to it. Add a garnish of a fresh basil leaf.
* Note that you are not muddling the basil a la a Mojito, it will ruin the drink to do that, let the ice smashing up against the leaves pull the flavor from the basil for you.