Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns

Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca

Hey! Olaiya from Milly's Kitchen and I are back with week two of our holiday blognanza (we're making it a word). I made this cheeseball which is so easy a child could do it. So hand the knife over to your toddler and let me know how their cheeseball turns out, okay? I take it back, please don't do that. Their dirty little hands will be all up in that cheese. I love kids! But they are gross. I mean we all are, but they're gross in front of people. I always stick my hands in food behind closed doors. Olaiya has been working on this awesome gift guide for you! From food and drink to books to the-hard-to-shop-for-person, she's got some great ideas for all the loved ones in your life so check it out!

My vision for this cheese ball is that it's served at a retro party. One with sequins, sexy jumpsuits and windows sprayed with fake snow from aerosol cans. Disco, funk and classic Christmas carols are playing as people dance around the tinseled tree. Ladies with winged hair and men in colourful polyester suits and afros are practicing ‘the bump’ and drinking eggnog. The table is covered in a plastic tablecloth printed with poinsettias. The cheese ball, canned ham, cocktail weenies, and melon balls are laid out ready to be eaten. Vegetables and dips of ranch or sour cream sit beside the tin of Quality Street chocolates. No one speaks about dairy or gluten intolerances because it’s the 70s and they don’t believe in nonsense like that. They believe in pet rocks, wood panelled walls, smoking on airplanes, optional seat belts and good old-fashioned hitchhiking. Now who wants to play Parcheesi?!?!

Jk, I don't know how to play Parcheesi. But it has the word cheesy in it. And there's your smooth segue to a cheese ball. Wow, I write good. The goodest perhaps.

This cheese ball is delicious. The best on day two actually. I would 100% bring it to a party and eat it all at said party. Then I'd leave with a stomach ache because it's too much cheese for any one person to ingest. The best part about a cheese ball– if there's leftovers you can reform it for your next party or your own personal snack.

Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca

Holiday Party Tips (section two)

 

How To Bring Your Best Self To The Party (or life)

We can go through life (or parties) on autopilot. Reacting to every interaction or stimulation that comes our way. This isn't a bad thing but it doesn't necessarily reflect who we truly are or desire to be. It's important to sit down with ourselves and relax, take in the day we've had and then move on with a fresh outlook. Often parties happen after a long day at work or maybe something happened in the day that throws us off. This section is to remind us that a party is supposed to be fun and relaxing, so let's not bring our emotional baggage along. Here are some questions to ask yourself before attending a gathering. 

How Can I Cultivate My Best + Brightest Self?

Before attending (or hosting) a gathering, take some time to get into a good feeling place. Here are some things that help me leave negativity behind and reset myself.

  • Deep breathing. Set a timer for as little as two to five minutes, close your eyes and breath deeply. Count your breaths in and out and think about each exhale releasing the feelings and events of the day. You don't need them anymore so let them go.
  • Stretching. Stretching is great for relaxation because we hold tension in our muscles and joints. Stretching helps release stress and allows us to open up physically + mentally. Five to ten minutes of yoga will have you feeling more grounded and positive.
  • Have fun getting ready. No need for getting ready to be a chore, sometimes it's my favourite part of the day. I like to pour myself a glass of wine and put on some music while I slowly get ready. Take your time, don't rush yourself. Life will still be there when you're done. Getting ready slowly gives me time to play with thoughts like "how do I want to feel?" or "What version of myself do I want to bring to this gathering?" This helps me take stock of where I am in that moment and how I can cultivate my new vibe. 

But I'm Tired 

  • Nap. This one is huge for me. Especially if I've worked the whole day. Cat naps are my favourite, you wouldn't believe what a 15 to 20 minute nap will do for your mood! You don't even have to be asleep– laying down peacefully with your eyes closed is just as effective for rejuvenation. I'm a whole different person when I get up.
  • Tea time. Brew a green or black tea and sip as you get ready. I prefer to drink tea before meeting up with people opposed to coffee that can leave you feeling jittery.
  • Shower to freshen up. Usually I'll do all three of these things if I'm in need of a serious perk up. Works every time.

What Should I Bring?

Besides your adorable self?! Let's see. There are two kinds of parties. 1) The gathering where the host supplies the food. If it's BYOB, then do that (or mocktail ingredients if you don't drink). If it did not specify to BYOB then bringing wine or a nice bottle of sparkling water is always welcome. I would refrain from bringing food if the host hasn't asked because they've taken the time to plan a menu. Say they're serving a traditional Italian meal their dead Nona bestowed upon them and you walk in the door with a bowl of green jello to serve alongside the tiramisu. They'll feel obligated to put it out even though Nona hated green jello with a passion. An unexpected dish will also take up room in the fridge or on the table that may not be available. 2) The potluck. Bring only food that is fully prepared or ready to eat. At most, a quick heat up in the oven upon arrival. Anything else creates extra work for the host. You don't want to be that person who shows up with a raw pork chop like, “it just needs to brine for an hour, marinated for thirty minutes, cooked in a cast iron pan and drizzled with grade A maple syrup." Now the host is stuck in the kitchen instead of enjoying their party. 

Did I RSVP?

I don't know, did you!? RSVP! And RSVP ASAP. OK? FYI it's rude to go MIA even if you're all TGIF, capiche?! The host needs to plan for food, drinks, seating etc, so be courteous and give them a heads up so things run smoothly.

Can I Bring Someone?

Probably! Or probably not. Depends on your host, I'm putting words in their mouth. Call and ask them! But definitely ask in case they're serving bacon wrapped chicken in a lamb stomach and your guest happens to be vegetarian. Awkward. 

What Do I Talk About At A Party?

Anything you want! It's a party so have fun and conversate! But actually, stay away from these topics:

  • Belief system conversations– like abortion, politics, religion and Donald Trump. Here in Canada pretty much no one likes Donald Trump but he's still a yuge downer so avoid this topic at all costs.
  • Work Talk. Try and refrain from too much talk about work even if coworkers are there. Nothing drains me more than coworker friends getting on a work rant while I'm trying to pretend I'm a wealthy artist-philanthropist who's docked her yacht and is slumming it for the night with these wild characters. Can't a girl dream!?
  • Complaining. Negative talk feels bad for you and everyone around you. It's a party so keep it fun and do what you need to before arriving to clear your mind of negative vibes. For help with this, read the first question.

When Should I Arrive?

Whenever they told you to arrive. But not early. And not too late. Unless you're coming to help the host prepare, avoid arriving early. The last 15 to 30 minutes is important for the host's finishing touches. A spritz of essential oils, a last minute clothing change (or five), a shot of vodka followed by affirmations in the mirror– let them have that time. If you arrive during these things, they may feel obligated to entertain you and it can throw off their mojo. You don't want to be a mojo thrower do you? Well, do you!?!?

Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca

Notes:

Make the cheese ball (without rolled nuts) the night before. The flavours were substantially better after I let it sit overnight. 

Feel free to substitute goat cheese or any other soft cheese you like for the blue. Blue cheese isn't everyone's cup of tea but all the flavours would work well with goat.

Substitute the pistachios for walnuts, pecans or almonds if you prefer. I like the pop of green from the roasted pistachios but any of the others would taste great. 

Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca
Stilton Pear Cheese Ball With Pistachios + Pink Peppercorns || This cheese ball is a perfect appetizer for a holiday party or dinner! Cream cheese, blue cheese, pear, pink peppercorns, pistachios + honey. Serve with crackers, bread, or vegetables. || creamandhoney.ca

And lastly, avoid breaking all your wine glasses. You'll have to pretend your water glasses are cool new stemless wine glasses that give the appearance of really being water glasses. They're supposed to be like that, okay?

Wishing you many fun + joyous gatherings this season!

Meg                                                                                                                                                                                            xx


STILTON PEAR CHEESE BALL WITH PISTACHIOS +

PINK PEPPERCORNS

the magic

inspiration:               70s retro christmas

the feels:                   soft, crunchy, creamy

eat with:                   crackers, bread/toast, vegetables, anything                                        that's scoopy, figs, wine– cabernet sauvignon,                                    cabernet franc, riesling, port, dessert wine

might like if you're into:   roller skating, disco hits, stinky cheeses,                                            beaded doorways, Happy Days, Donna                                                Summer, mood rings, 8-tracks, shag carpet

the science

makes one large cheese ball || prep time: 15 minutes chilling time: a couple hours

ingredients:

  • 250 grams (8 oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 150 grams stilton cheese (or any other blue you like), at room temperature
  • 1 pear, diced into small cubes (mine were about 1 cm)
  • 1 cup of shelled roasted pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 1.5 teaspoons crushed pink peppercorns (or any other colour)
  • 1.5 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (scant)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced

method:

  1. Ensure that your cheeses and butter are at room temperature so they will mix evenly and easily.
  2. In a small bowl add the pear and lemon juice (this prevents the pear from browning). Toss to mix. In a medium bowl, add cream cheese, stilton cheese, butter, salt, and honey. Mix until evenly combined. Add diced pear and peppercorns to cheese mixture. Fold in until evenly distributed. 
  3. Place cheese mixture in a large piece of saran wrap. Shape into a sphere and wrap up. Place in the fridge for a minimum of a few hours or overnight to let the flavours settle together and so the cheese can firm up. 
  4. Lay pistachio pieces on a place or shallow dish. When cheese is firm, remove from fridge and roll in the pistachios until fully covered. You can serve it to guests immediately or cover it up in saran wrap and keep it in the fridge until guests arrive. Leave it out for 15 to 30 minutes before serving. Serve with honey, crackers, bread, and/or chopped raw vegetables.

Will keep in the fridge for up to a week or so if securely wrapped in plastic.

STRAWBERRY CASHEW MILK

Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca

Hi! Strawberry Milk here. Remember me? You used to make yourself sick drinking too much of me. And then again the next day. One of the first emotionally addictive relationships you returned to time and time again. We would spend snack time together colouring outside the lines and building lego houses with teeny tiny potted plants in the windows. You would pour me into bowls of food that turned into important life lessons like, strawberry milk + cheerios = good. And strawberry milk + hot dog mac and cheese = bad. Well, I'm back as Strawberry Milk 2.0! I shed my concentrated bottle form for some more realness, some more rawness. Raw nuts to be exact. And soaked! Wow, do people love soaking food in 2017! Coming into present day from the 90s has been an adjustment to say the least. 

Everyone is all, “STRAWBERRY MILK! Girl, where have you been?!" and “What are you doing in that smelly box where people shoot up?"                                                                                                                                     And I'm like,  “This payphone booth?! I need to make a call..."                                                                               And they're like,  “Oh honey, noooo. Phone booths are basically public bathrooms now. We use smart phones for everything here in 2017. You don't need to walk anywhere or talk to anyone. Isn't that amazeballs?!"         And I'm like,  “Does that mean good? Are balls different now? Are they better than the wrinkled hairy egg sacks they once were? Maybe now they're rose gold and can be hung up with a cute potted plant inside. Or is this like opposite day?! Tell me we still do opposite day!!!".

My friends made me get rid of my Angelfire website because apparently people don't make         radically hormonal fan pages anymore like my site, “I LOVE LEO FOREVER!!!" with 89 photos of Leonardo Dicaprio as Romeo and Jack from Titanic. They were all placed strategically on a black background with neon green lettering indicating all my up to date facts on Leo himself including his favourite food and how he was SO cool and funny in real life. Now I have a very professional LinkedIn Profile where black and neon green aren't even a colour palette option. (It remains undetermined if Leo ever saw the website, if he did he has not reached out).

It's confusing for me in 2017. Did you know that people say “suh" as a how-do-you-do? I guess when you're too tired to annunciate a “p" sound, you use a combination of sup and huh to create the laziest greeting ever spoken by humankind. But if you're that tired you should probably go take a nap. Which nowadays means laying with your phone scrolling food photos or comparing your life to someone you knew from high school 10 years ago. On that note– Coffee, that busy b*tch, hasn't missed a f*#king beat. She's all fancy and cool now with her pour overs and cold brews and flat whites. She was Drip Coffee and down to earth in my day with the occasional espresso which we all pronounced “express-o". Because that was a very fast coffee for wall street types who had no time to waste and were all, “COMMODITIES! STOCKS! HEDGE FUNDS!!! ONE EXPRESS-O NOW PLEASE!!!! EXTRA EXPRESS, I'M IN A HURRY AND LATE FOR THE HEART ATTACK I'M DEFINITELY GOING TO GIVE MYSELF! ". Those were the days.

 I'm working on being more current. I'm on Tinder (and hooked up with Avocado Toast one night), Jamie Oliver follows me on Instagram, I have a serious case of wanderlust and FOMO and I'm totes gluten free af obv (can't say the same for Avocado Toast who ghosted me after we Netflix and chilled btw). I binged all of Game Of Thrones in one week and have to say it's even more addictive than Beverly Hills 90210 and Dawson's Creek put together. John Snow may know nothing but he sure is fine af. Last week I took an unplugged vacation (no phones, computers, or electronics of any kind) just to get away from it all, you know? Thinking about trying one of those sensory deprivation tanks but wondering if the salt water would keep me afloat or if I would disappear as I'm also liquid form. I dunno, I'll head over to AskJeeves and “google it" to find out. 

Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Soaking Cashews || Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca

(A special thanks to Strawberry Milk for being such an honest and brave contributor this week).

This strawberry cashew milk is to die for and fills you with the best kind of nostalgia. It's creamy, a tiny bit sweet and packed with strawberry flavour without any additives or refined sugar. And the pink bubbles are enough to make anyone's day.

I suggest having a glass while doodling, colouring, puzzle-making, listening to some surf rock or enjoy with some kids that may or may not be your own because they'll be hyped about it. And us adults need more fun hype.

Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca

Notes:

Roasting the strawberries with a bit of honey is important, especially if they are not in season, because it brings out the strawberry flavour so much more than raw berries. It will still work without roasting them but I would highly recommend not skipping this step. Plus you get abstract strawberry juice art like below. 

Depending on how creamy you like your milk, you can reduce or add water. This recipe is my ideal creaminess so add less water if you like it thicker or add more if you prefer thinner. 

Soaking cashews is easier than you think. I've added some info in the recipe section on how to make this recipe the lazy way (only soaking for 15 minutes in very hot water) or the patient way (overnight in cool water). I've done both methods and they both turn out great. 

Roasted Strawberries || Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca
Strawberry Cashew Milk || All natural plant based nut milk made with fresh strawberries and no refined sugars. Delicious on its own at breakfast or poured over granola as a snack. Dairy free + vegan. || creamandhoney.ca

You best head over to this maca almond granola recipe for an ideal strawberry milk companion. 


STRAWBERRY CASHEW MILK

the magic

inspiration:                     90s nostalgia

the feels:                         creamy, foamy, satiating

eat with:                          any granola but especially this one, a slice                                        of cake, cookies, celery sticks + peanut                                              butter, ice cream (pour over top with fresh                                          berries or turn into a milkshake)

might like if you're into:   The Simpsons, Disney Adventures                                                     magazine, deep and delicious chocolate                                             cake, Goosebumps books, cherry coke,                                                 making a house out of a refrigerator                                                 box,  Supermarket Sweep, Saved By The                                             Bell, Ghostwriter.

the science

makes approximately 5 cups of milk || soaking time: 30 minutes to 8 hours prep time: 20 minutes

ingredients:

  • 1 pint fresh strawberries, stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 2 dates (or 1 to 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey)
  • 2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract, divided (1 tsp for berries, 1 tsp for milk)
  • dash of kosher salt
  • 4 cups of water, divided

method:

  1. Soak your raw cashews. There are two ways you can do it. 1) The overnight way– Add cashews to a jar or container and fill with water. Leave to soak for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight. 2) The easy impatient way– Add cashews to a bowl or container and pour very hot, but not boiling water to cover them. (Heat up your tea kettle, let boil, then remove from stovetop and wait two minutes before pouring.) Wait a minimum of 15 minutes up to 2 hours depending how much time you have. Drain cashews and rinse until water is clear.
  2. While your cashews are soaking, preheat your oven to 350ºF. Add strawberries, one tablespoon of honey and one teaspoon vanilla extract to a medium sized bowl. Toss together until evenly combined. Pour onto lined baking sheet and bake for 10 - 15 minutes, until the juices start leaking out. Place aside to let cool. 
  3. Add cashews and 2 cups of water to blender. Blend on low and increase speed slowly up to high until cashews are completely liquified, usually up to 2 minutes. I use a vitamix but this should still work in a regular blender, it may take a bit more time.
  4. Add berries, two more cups of water, dates, one teaspoon vanilla extract, and salt. Blend until evenly combined (one minute or so). 

Milk will keep for up to 3 to 4 days in the fridge.

 

BLUEBERRY LEMON MINT SODA

Blueberry Lemon Mint Soda || Refreshing summer mocktail recipe made with blueberries, lemon juice, honey, sparkling water + fresh mint. No refined sugars and tastes amazing as a gin or vodka cocktail. || creamandhoney.ca

In support of summer weather I bring you this cooling drink so you can settle into the deep heat. Let if flow over you; welcome it because it won't stay forever and you'll be craving it soon. Sip cold drinks, point fans at your barely clothed body and avoid turning on your oven. This is how I live in hot summer months. 

Pros of Hot Weather

  • No need for a sauna, you live in one
  • A multitude of cold drinks all day long
  • Swimming feels exceptional and necessary
  • Being lazy and not feeling bad about it 
  • Patio drinks
  • Rose wine (or frose)
  • Hair on head grows faster

Cons of Hot Weather

  • Hair on body grows faster
  • Bugs everywhere
  • Hot garbage smell (in the city)
  • Hot manure smell (in the country)
  • Under boob sweat
  • Back sweat pooling in butt crack
  • Chub rub– the struggle is real my fellow thick thigh ladies (and men).
  • It's so hot your drink sweats and slips out of your hand and spills all over your new summer dress. But at least you're cooled off so maybe it's a pro?

I've been obsessed with blueberries lately (see my blueberry tarragon gravlax). They are a classic Canadian summer food and I feel the need to devour them in pies, smoothies, jams, muffins or all on their own. They awaken memories of wandering through forests, swimming in lakes and the sound of cicadas on hot days. 

Blueberry Lemon Mint Soda || Refreshing summer mocktail recipe made with blueberries, lemon juice, honey, sparkling water + fresh mint. No refined sugars and tastes amazing as a gin or vodka cocktail. || creamandhoney.ca
yellow water lily + my bff Alex

yellow water lily + my bff Alex

I just returned from a camping trip with two of my favourite people and we had the most amazing time. We canoed down a river filled with lilies and lily pads, saw blue herons up close, bought doughnut and watermelon floaties and swam in the waves of Lake Huron, made delicious camp food, played cards, sipped on these wine-ciders (half cider + half pinot noir = the perfect cooler), listened to baby wolves howling at night and relaxed into our naturey surroundings. It reminded me how peaceful and calming my mind can be and how connected I feel in the outdoors. It reminded me I live in an outrageously beautiful country with a rich history of people who lived off this land and respected it to the highest degree. It reminded me of the beauty all over the world and how much I still want to see and experience. As much as I tend to dislike winters in Canada (which feel never ending), the summers are so gorgeous that it might make up for it. No Canadian has ever uttered the words “Winters go by so fast!". If they do they're lying and are probably trying to get you to visit when it's cold and dark and all they'll want to do is cuddle and eat bread. Don't. Do. It.

But do come in the summer. It is breathtaking. 

white water lily

white water lily

Lake Huron at Pinery Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada

Lake Huron at Pinery Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada

Blueberry Lemon Mint Soda || Refreshing summer mocktail recipe made with blueberries, lemon juice, honey, sparkling water + fresh mint. No refined sugars and tastes amazing as a gin or vodka cocktail. || creamandhoney.ca
Blueberry Lemon Mint Soda || Refreshing summer mocktail recipe made with blueberries, lemon juice, honey, sparkling water + fresh mint. No refined sugars and tastes amazing as a gin or vodka cocktail. || creamandhoney.ca
Blueberry Lemon Mint Soda || Refreshing summer mocktail recipe made with blueberries, lemon juice, honey, sparkling water + fresh mint. No refined sugars and tastes amazing as a gin or vodka cocktail. || creamandhoney.ca

Let's talk simple syrup for a hot minute. I want to show you how to make your own easily and with more exciting things than white sugar. This recipe calls for a honey simple syrup. Don't worry, it takes no time and you'll have a new skill to impress people with. 

Standard simple syrup recipes are a 1:1 ratio of sugar/sweetener to water. If you prefer a thinner less sweet syrup, add a bit more water than sugar. If you prefer a thicker sweeter syrup, add more sugar than water. “Rich syrup" is a 2:1 ratio of sugar to water. Usually simple syrup is made by adding water and sugar/sweetener of choice to a small pot and heating to just before a boil until fully dissolved. But there is no need to turn on the stove on a hot day. Below I have included the lazy person's way which is how I usually make drink syrups of all kinds. 

Make simple syrups out of any of the following for subtle but different flavours:

  • Demerara or turbinado syrup– for a deeper more caramel-like flavour. Good for tropical drinks/ rum drinks.
  • Honey syrup– you can use any type of honey you like. Good for iced black/green tea, drinks with jasmine, gin, lemon, or bourbon. 
  • Agave syrup– the lighter in colour the agave is, the more it will taste like classic simple syrup. The darker in colour the more rich the flavour will be, closer to honey. Good for margaritas (lighter agave), tequila or mezcal cocktails, drinks with lime or watermelon.
  • Coconut sugar or brown sugar syrup– for a deeper, more molasses-like flavour. Good for winter cocktails, old fashioneds, bourbon based cocktails. 
  • Maple syrup– use real maple syrup always. Good for old fashioneds, bourbon based cocktails, ciders, mulled wine, dark or light rum, any warm winter flavours like allspice, cinnamon or clove. 

One Minute Honey Simple Syrup Recipe

  • Boil water in your kettle. Add equal parts of honey and boiled water to a container with a tight sealable lid. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds or until completely dissolved. Keep in fridge for up to one month. Make as much or as little as you like. 
Blueberry Lemon Mint Soda || Refreshing summer mocktail recipe made with blueberries, lemon juice, honey, sparkling water + fresh mint. No refined sugars and tastes amazing as a gin or vodka cocktail. || creamandhoney.ca

BLUEBERRY LEMON MINT SODA

the magic

inspiration:                         hot summer days in Canada

the feels:                             sweet, tart, fresh, effervescent

eat with:                              barbecued fish, blueberry tarragon                                                    gravlax, a splash of gin, watermelon                                                  feta salad

might like if you're into:      Foraging, fruit galettes, pine forests,                                                canoeing, The Great Lakes, the sound of                                            cicadas, daddy long legs, wading in                                                  rivers

 

the science

ingredients:

                                                                                                                                                                                       blueberry preserves

  • 1 cup blueberries (frozen)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 4 - 6 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 lemon zested

blueberry lemon soda (one serving)

  • 1.5 ounces (3 tablespoons) blueberry preserves
  • 1/2 ounce lemon juice
  • 1/4 ounce honey simple syrup (see above for easy one minute recipe)
  • 4 mint leaves
  • sparkling water
  • mint sprig or lemon wheel for garnish

method:

                                                                                                                                                                                          blueberry preserves 

  1. Add blueberries, sugar, lemon zest and 4 tablespoons of water to small pot. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer blueberries for 10 to 15 minutes. Add 1 to 2 more tablespoons of water if thick. The final consistency should be more like blueberry syrup, not thick like jam. Let cool, pour into mason jar  and seal. Keep in fridge for up to one week or in the freezer for up to two months. 

blueberry lemon soda

  1. In a cocktail shaker (or mason jar), add blueberry preserves, lemon juice, honey simple syrup, and mint leaves. Fill shaker or jar 3/4 full with ice, seal and shake for 10 seconds. Fill short rocks glass with ice, open cocktail shaker and strain (with cocktail strainer or hand held strainer) over rocks glass. Top with sparkling water, stir gently and garnish with mint sprig or sliced lemon wheel. If using a bigger/taller glass or making two, double the ratios in the recipe.