Have you ever made something once and then become determined to use it over and over again in new ways? Let’s use simple syrup as an example here. It’s such an easy, and occasionally necessary, component for a cocktail or sweetened beverage, but we do have some friends who didn’t even know that you could make it yourself. With just a little sugar and water, yes, even you can make your own simple syrup. It’s a blank canvas that can be adjusted and flavored however you choose. Once you have the base, you can add it to just about anything. Make a big batch and store it for all those times your recipe needs a little something sweet.
Most people know that mojitos require simple syrup as a sweetener, but really, you can use it in almost anything that needs a bit of sugar. Start the base of your lemonade or sweet tea with simple syrup. Take it a step further and play around with a pastry chef’s method of keeping cakes moist–brushing simple syrup on top before frosting. You can adjust your ratios of sugar to water depending on the final use. A ratio of one part sugar to one part water is the basic recipe, but you can go as high as three to one (a very thick syrup) or two to one (a mid-range syrup). The thinnest syrups are used for glazing cakes or cookies, whereas the thicker syrups typically find themselves in drinks or drenching candied fruits. This refreshing vodka drink is laced with hints of fresh ginger and sour lime. The infused simple syrup acts as a conduit that brings everything together and initiates a little kick with each sip. Who knew simple syrup could be that little spark!
Ginger Lime Cooler – Serves 6
1 1/2 cups sugar
5″ ginger nub, peeled and sliced
Zest of 8 limes
Juice of 8 limes
1 1/4 cup vodka
1/4 cup triple sec
1. Pour the sugar and 1 1/2 cups water into a sauce pan and cook over medium high heat until it forms a thin syrup, approximately 7-10 minutes.
2. Remove the sauce pan from heat and allow to cool for a few minutes. Pour into a glass jar or bottle and add the lime zest and ginger nub. Set aside to steep and cool completely.
3. In a large pitcher, stir the lime juice, vodka and triple sec together with 5 cups of water. Once the ginger lime syrup is ready, remove the ginger and pour the syrup in the pitcher. Stir well.
4. Serve over ice with a few slices of lime.
Click HERE for the printable recipe.