Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Frozen Tart Cherrytini

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I can’t believe the first month of 2012 went by so quickly.  Here’s my question for you, my dear friends.  Were you able to keep up with your New Year Resolutions so far?  Smile “Eat healthy food” and “exercise more to get fit” are among the top New Year Resolutions for most people every year.  Are those your New Year Resolutions as well?  What does it have to do with my Frozen Tart Cherrytini, you might ask.  Here’s what.  Have a few drinks and forget about your New Year Resolutions!  hahaha….no, no, no, I’m just teasing.  Seriously, here’s what.

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Tart cherries are one of today’s hottest Super Fruits with many health benefits!  Did you know February is also National Cherry Month?  I’m so glad to have the opportunity to participate in Kitchen PLAY’s February Progressive Party featuring these lovely Tart Cherries brought to us by The Cherry Marketing Institute.

According to The Cherry Marketing Institute, there are more than 50 studies specifically on tart cherries, linking the fruit to anti-inflammatory benefits, reduced pain from gout and arthritis, and an extensive list of heart health benefits. Recent studies even suggest tart cherries can help reduce post-exercise muscle and joint pain. Isn’t that wonderful?

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I love that bright red, vibrant color from the tart cherries. The color is not just for looks! This bright red color comes from the powerful antioxidants called anthocyanins, which are also responsible for tart cherries’ high antioxidant capacity and anti-inflammatory benefits.  If you’re interested to read more about the health benefits and nutrition information, please visit Choose Cherries.

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So, drink up before and after you exercise! This super fruit is simply awesome and good for you. I prepared two different beverages using tart cherry juice. One is the cocktail version of Frozen Tart Cherrytini (with vodka), which is perfect for cocktail parties, gatherings, or a romantic date with your significant other to celebrate the upcoming Valentine’s Day! Winking smile The other version that I have prepared for you is a non-alcoholic version, which is perfect for your every day enjoyment, especially post-exercise replenishment.  Both versions are super refreshing, with the sweet and tart flavors balanced so well with each other.

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You might wonder the differences between sweet cherries and tart cherries? Sweet cherries are grown primarily for fresh eating. The tart cherry, also called “red tart”, “sour cherry” or “Montmorency”, is widely processed into dried, frozen and juice forms so they are available year-round.  For more recipe ideas, please visit Choose Cherries’ site, follow them on Facebook or Twitter.  It’s super fun and easy to Go Red Instead!  Smile

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The Cherry Marketing Institute is also sponsoring a delicious giveaway at Kitchen PLAY. Simply recreate one or more recipes from this month’s Progressive Party, post about the experience on your blog and provide a link to your post on Kitchen PLAY to enter.  All qualifying bloggers in each course will be entered to win the following prize pack shipped directly to each winner (valued at $100).
No purchase necessary to enter. Void where prohibited. Open to US residents only. The deadline is February 29, 2012. Please review the complete contest rules before entering. Good luck!

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Please drink responsibly.  Health and General Disclaimers.




Frozen Tart Cherrytini  (Printable Recipe)
Servings: 4

12 frozen pitted tart cherries
2 Meyer lemons (or regular lemons if you can’t find them)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 cups tart cherry juice, chilled
1 1/2 cups vodka (I used Grey Goose)
2 cups of ice cubes

Thread 3 tart cherries onto each (4-inch) cocktail pick or skewer and keep them in the freezer until they are ready to serve.

Zest one Meyer lemon onto a shallow dish, mix together with sugar, set aside. Cut lemon in halves and “rub” the cut-side of the lemon against the rims of the 4 (10oz) martini glasses. Dip the rims of the glasses into the lemon-sugar. With a vegetable peeler, peel the other Meyer lemon.  In a large pitcher, twist the lemon peels to extract the natural oil, and leave the peels inside the pitcher after the twisting and squeezing.

Squeeze the juice from both lemons into the pitcher and add the cherry juice and vodka. Fill a cocktail shaker with 1 cup of ice. Pour 1/2 of the vodka mixture into the cocktail shaker and shake for at least 20 seconds.

Pour into 2 of the prepared glasses. Repeat with the remaining vodka mixture. Place a cocktail pick with frozen tart cherries onto each glass and serve.

 

Frozen Tart “Cherrytini” (non-alcohol version)
(Printable Recipe)
Servings: 4
12 frozen pitted tart cherries
2 Meyer lemons (or regular lemons if you can’t find them)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 cups tart cherry juice, chilled
1 1/2 cups white grape juice
2 cups of ice cubes

Thread 3 tart cherries onto each (4-inch) cocktail pick or skewer and keep them in the freezer until ready to serve. Zest one Meyer lemon onto a shallow dish, mix together with sugar, set aside.  Cut lemon in halves and “rub” the cut-side of the lemon against the rims of the 4 (10oz) martini glasses.  Dip the rims of the glasses into the lemon-sugar.

With a vegetable peeler, peel the other Meyer lemon.  In a large pitcher, twist the lemon peels to extract the natural oil, and leave the peels inside the pitcher after the twisting and squeezing.  Squeeze the juice from both lemons into the pitcher and add the cherry juice and grape juice.

Fill a cocktail shaker with 1 cup of ice. Pour 1/2 of the tart cherry mixture into the cocktail shaker and shake for at least 20 seconds. Pour into 2 of the prepared glasses. Repeat with the remaining tart cherry mixture.

Place a cocktail pick with frozen tart cherries onto each glass and serve.




33 comments:

  1. these look so beautiful! that cherry juice gives it such a great color.

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    1. Thank you. Oh yes it is. I love that tart cherry juice with that vibrant red color and sweet & tart flavor.

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    1. Thank you, dear. Hope you'll give this recipe a try. :) Have a wonderful day.

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  3. Terrific! STUNNING photos. Good luck with your entree

    Dave

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    1. Thank you, Dave. Have a wonderful day. :)

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  4. What a gorgeous cocktail. Mouth. Watering.

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    1. Thank you for your comment, Lora. Hope you'll give this recipe a try. Have a wonderful day.

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  5. Gonna try this, Amy! I love your pictures...I'll look forward to more posts.Lovely site!

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    1. Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving a comment. Let me know how you like the cocktail after you've tried it. :) I look forward to hearing from you again soon.

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  6. What a beautiful cocktail! I love the deep red color and that you gave us an alcohol and non-alcohol version!!

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    1. Thank you, Quyen. Thanks to the lovely tart cherry juice that gives this cocktail the deep red color! :) I'm going to make it again for the game day! :)

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  7. I'm loving the looks of your drinks!love the sugar with lemon zest, I can already imagine how this would taste!

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    1. Thank you, Dear. Wish you a wonderful weekend ahead!

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  8. Thanks for letting us know all the benefits of tart cherry, Amy...Christine

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    1. You're very welcome, Christine. Thank you for stopping my and leaving a comment. :) Wish you a wonderful weekend.

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  9. Oh that cherry cocktail looks good! I don't drink, so it would be right up my alley!
    We never went out for Val Day either. We both worked, getting a babysitter, too much trouble. A nice dinner at home is fine with me too!
    The macarons look delicious!

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    1. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment, Kathleen. If you don't drink, you should try the non-alcohol version of this cocktail! My kids are big fans! :)
      I totally agree with you, a nice dinner at home to celebrate is perfect for me too. Have a wonderful rest of the weekend.

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  10. My this does sound like a really tasty and healthy cocktail! The color of it is beautiful and makes it "look" like it would warm you up in cold weather. I love "healthy" cocktails! :)

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    1. Oh yes, I love a "feel good" cocktail any time! :) Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful weekend!

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  11. oh this look delicious!!

    Thanks for linking up!! I featured your post in my wrap up http://tidymom.net/2012/super-bowl-party-food-2/

    Have a great Sunday!

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    1. Thank you so much for featuring my recipe! Truly appreciate it. I love your linky party and wrap up. There are always filled with mouth-watering recipes and inspiring crafts projects! Thank you for hosting.

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  12. Hi Amy,
    This is beautiful and looks delicious! I have been looking for Tart Cherry Juice and it is very hard to find. Any ideas? Please let me know. Hope you are having a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

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    1. Thank you for your comment and question, Helen. A few of my local supermarkets do carry the Tart Cherry Juice. Check the availability for Red Tart Cherry Concentrate Juice if you can't find the regular ones. Some place only carry the concentrate ones. I hope you'll be able to get some because it sure is delicious. Thanks for hosting Full Plate Thursday! Have a wonderful week ahead of you.

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  13. Oh how pretty, Amy! I am not much of a drinker so this non-alcohol version sounds just perfect for me! I always wish that I can make special drinks like this. I need to save this recipe!

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    1. Thank you, Nami. Hope you'll like this drink as much as my family does. I truly love how refreshing and how easy it is to put together. :)

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    1. Thank you, Julie. Have a wonderful day!

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  15. The cocktails and "mocktails" are beautiful and healthy as well. Really love the meyer lemon zest in the sugar rim-great idea! You can make this with canned red tart cherries in water as well, They keep in the cupboard, come with their own juice and you can find them in any grocery store under the Oregon Brand.

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    1. Thank you for your comment and the information. Good to know the canned red tart cherries works wonderful as well. I'll be keeping an eye on them on my next grocery shopping. :) Cheers!

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  16. Now, that's a glam cocktail. And good for you, too! In that case, I'll have two. ;)

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    2. Thank you, Carolyn. Cheers to you!

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