Make Your Next Toast With the Hazel

Make Your Next Toast With the Hazel

How do you commemorate a special lady’s 90th birthday? If your her niece, Linda, you throw a fabulous ’40s-themed surprise birthday party chock full of friends and relatives. If you are me (read: the caterer), you create a special cocktail in Hazel’s honor.

Since I am a huge fan of Bellini’s, and recently fell in love with rosemary simple syrup, I decided on a modified Bellini, using a crisp vihno verde in lieu of prosecco, and adding a touch of sophistication with the addition of rosemary simple syrup.

Now, after we finished our Zumba lesson (no joke!), 90-year-old Hazel told me she loved her cocktail so much that she wants to whip up a pitcher for her girlfriends when she makes it back to Florida. I’ll drink to that, Hazel. I’ll drink to that.

The Hazel

Ingredients for Rosemary Simple Syrup:

1 cup sugar
1 cup water
4 fresh rosemary sprigs

Directions for Rosemary Simple Syrup:

1. Stir together first 3 ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, and boil 1 minute or until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat, and let stand 30 minutes.

2. Pour liquid through a wire-mesh strainer into a cruet or airtight container, discarding rosemary sprigs. Cover and chill 4 hours. Garnish, if desired. Syrup may be stored in refrigerator up to 1 month.

Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

Ingredients for the Hazel:
2-3 large white peaches*
1/4 of a lemon
7 ounces rosemary simple syrup (see recipe above)
750 ml (one bottle) vihno verde (or light white wine)
Sprigs of rosemary 3″ to 4″ in length (preferably with purple flowers) for garnish

Directions for the Hazel:

1. Cut peaches into large chunks. Place in blender with a squeeze of lemon juice (to prevent browning). Blend until smooth.

2. Strain peach puree through a medium strainer or chinois. The puree will be slightly thick, so you will probably need to push it through the strainer with a pestle or the back side of a ladle.

3. In a pitcher combine the strained peach puree and rosemary simple syrup with the white wine.

4. Chill and serve in wine glasses with a sprig of rosemary.

Serves: 4-6

*Shortcut: Substitute 2/3 cup of store bought peach juice. Skip the lemon juice.



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