Just as fun to give as it is to receive

This year I made Cranberry Vodka to give and share with my family and friends.  Homemade gifts, made from the heart and from alcohol just seem to be so well received!  I would also bet that aside from my label “made with love from Linda”, this little bottle will not be re-gifted!   

Planning ahead is required as the cranberries need to steep for about 3 months to produce the berry red color and infuse the vodka.  Think of Christmas in July and get a jump on holiday gift giving!  I actually started the Cranberry Vodka in October along with small bottles of vanilla extract to give to my baking friends.  I always keep a large liquor bottle of vodka filled with Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Beans steeping continuously for my intense vanilla extract usage! 

I purchase the bottles from Specialty Bottles and the labels from My Own Labels.  There is no exact science here, just fill a large jug with good quality vodka and fill with organic cranberries.  Set in a dark place, shake once a week and in about three months, the Cranberry Vodka is ready.  Printed on the back label I included two martini recipes; Very Berry  Martini and French Martini.

Very Berry Martini

2 oz Cranberry Vodka

4 ox Cranberry Juice

1 oz Triple Sec

Shake vigorously in a cocktail shaker with ice.  Pour into chilled martini glass.  Makes 1 martini.

French Martini

1 oz Cranberry Vodka

1 oz pineapple juice

1 oz Chambord

Shake vigorously in a cocktail shaker with ice.  Pour into chilled martini glass. Makes 1 martini.

I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.

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