November 30, 2012
Candy Cane Cooler
I stumbled across this recipe for Candy Cane Coolers awhile ago, 'pinned' it, and decided to give it a try once candy canes were back in season for the holidays. Well, last week I finally got around to making the recipe, and it was nothing like I thought it'd be. It wasn't sweet, and it didn't pack the strong peppermint punch I was hoping for.
But I figured why waste all this delicious vodka? So instead of giving up, I decided to experiment around to make the drink I really wanted. Once I was done, I was really surprised! It's delicious. Sweet, but not cloyingly sweet, peppermint-y and cool, and very boozy. A little goes a long way. I think I'll go ahead and whip up another bottle for all upcoming holiday parties this year.
Candy Cane Cooler
5-6 large peppermint candy canes, crushed
12 ounces vodka (mint-infused would work great if you've got it)
4 ounces brandy
6-12 ounces half-and-half
Simple syrup or flavored syrup, to taste
1/4 tsp. peppermint extract (optional)
Mint sprigs and small candy canes for garnishing
Crush the candy canes into pieces and pour into a quart-sized bottle or jar. Top with the mint-infused vodka, brandy, and half-and-half. Shake well, and set aside for 30 minutes until the candy canes begin to dissolve, and the liquid turns pink.
Shake again, and add the simple syrup (peppermint or vanilla flavored syrup works too), 1 tablespoon at a time, until the flavor suits your tastes. Optional: add 1/4 tsp. of peppermint extract. Store in the refrigerator.
Shake before serving. Pour in a cocktail glass over a cube or two of ice, and garnish with a sprig of mint and a small candy cane over the rim of the glass. Tip: If the beverage is too strong for you, cut it with a little more half-and half or milk.