I had a delicious cocktail recently that was made with grapefruit juice, basil and vodka. I haven’t tried making it myself but plan to as soon as I remember to pick up grapefruit juice at the store! In the meantime, I’ve been thinking about the basil component of the drink. As a summer cocktail I’d probably use fresh basil muddled with the fruit juice but in the winter and early spring when we don’t have a garden full of basil I’ll need another option. If you’ve been following my blog for long you’ll know where this is leading….Basil Simple Syrup! As you know I love simple syrups. They are such an easy way to preserve the fresh flavor of herbs, fruits and berries and can be used in so many ways. Just last night I had some of my mint simple syrup drizzled over chocolate pudding and it was heavenly!
Basil Simple Syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- two big handfuls of basil (or as much as you can stuff in the pot)
In a small pot, combine water and sugar and bring to a low boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add basil and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer for at least 10 minutes (I have forgotten and simmered it much longer, it turned out fine!). Pour into jars and store in the fridge or can for pantry storage. When you pour the syrup into the jars you probably won’t need to use a filter since the sugar coated leaves will form a sticky lump that will remain in the pot.
Now- what to use my Basil Syrup in first? Basil & Lime Highball? Basil Lemonade with my Lemon Syrup? Strawberry Basil Martini? It’s a good thing its Friday!