Thursday, January 27, 2011
Improve on Perfection? You Be the Judge!
Passion is a funny thing. I've been on a Meyer lemon tear for the last couple of weeks and, even as I type this, two of the yellow-orange orbs are sitting on my kitchen counter begging to be used. Their smooth skins cry to be caressed and their scent is perfuming the whole room.
I've squeezed their juice into a crab risotto. A curling strip of peel has done its magic as the final touch in our house Negroni. And just the other day Dave ran across a recipe that called for the juice of Meyer lemons in a Whiskey Sour. The original Whiskey Sour, using regular lemons, is considered a perfect cocktail, so the possibility of improving on perfection was tempting.
"Should we give it a try?" he asked. Mais oui!
With balance like Olga Korbut, it's one of those cocktails, as my brother is wont to say, that's waaaaaaaaay too easy to drink. It's the perfect pre-dinner cocktail, not too heavy or sweet, an aperitif rather than a gut bomb. And if you want to give your guests a choice of tart or sweet, take a page from Vancouver, BC, bartender Shaun Layton of L'Abattoir and swipe just half the rim with a curve of extra fine sugar. Freaking brilliant!
So what's the next recipe that's going to send me into paroxysms of Meyer lemon lust? Preserved lemons? A Meyer lemon pie? I can't wait to find out!
Meyer Lemon Whiskey Sour
Adapted from Nora Maynard in The Kitchn
1 1/2 oz. whiskey (rye or bourbon)
1 oz. freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice
1/4-1/2 oz. simple syrup*, according to taste
Sugar rim, optional
Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a cocktail glass (with optional sugar rim). Drop in an amarena cherry. Makes one cocktail.
* Simple syrup: Equal parts sugar and water and heated in a saucepan on the stove, stirred until the sugar dissolves completely, then chilled.