Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fall Drinks: Cranberry Cobbler

Fall has finally arrived here in the Midwest and along with it all of the things that make this such a great season.  With the air being a little cooler and crisper than it was a month ago, it's a great time to break out your sweaters, jackets, and cooler weather food and drink recipes.  Since it's not quite hot toddy weather yet, I am not going to jump all the way to snowstorm winter night drinks.  This first recipe is something I tried for the first time recently and while it doesn't have the same warming affect as some classic hot cocktails, it combines a lot of great fall flavors in something still pretty light and crisp.  So enjoy the first installation of our fall food and drink series.

Cranberry Cobbler
recipe courtesy of

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  • 1/2 orange, sliced into thin rounds
  • 1 1/2 cups London dry gin (such as Beefeater or Tanqueray)
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon off-dry Sherry (such as Lustau East India Solera)
  • 6 mint sprigs
Bring sugar and 3/4 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan; stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat. Pour off all but 1 cup simple syrup; refrigerate remaining syrup for another use.
Heat syrup in pan almost to a boil; reduce heat to medium. Add cranberries and simmer until they just begin to burst, 2-3 minutes. Let cool in syrup.

Place 2 tablespoons drained cranberries and 6 tablespoons cranberry syrup in a large pitcher. Add lemon wedges and orange slices. Using a muddler or wooden spoon, vigorously mash fruit. Stir in gin and Sherry. 

Let steep for 5 minutes.

Strain into a medium pitcher. Fill 3 glasses with crushed ice. Pour half of mixture into a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice; shake vigorously for 10 seconds. Strain into prepared glasses, then mound with more crushed ice. Garnish each with a mint sprig and 3 cranberries. Repeat to make 3 more cocktails.

Make it a Mocktail: Omit gin and Sherry and add 1/4 cup tonic or spicy ginger ale.

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