Tonight is Halloween and NYC is definitely a creepy place to be tonight in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy! Halloween has seriously been impacted by the hurricane, with the cancellation of the 39th Annual Village Halloween Parade and countless events and parties. Can really do much when 20% of NYC is without power and without public transportation.
I created The Frankenstorm cocktail, which only seemed fitting for the situation here an all along the eastern seaboard. It is a modified Hurricane Punch (of course) with a bloody dripping rim. Green in color with a frothy head, the Frankenstorm looks like many New Yorkers feel tonight.
Happy Halloween to all and Cheers!
1 oz. Ketel One Vodka
1 oz. Blue Curacao
2 oz. Orange Juice
2 oz. Pineapple Juice
For the Rim:
Karo syrup colored with red food coloring
(dip glass rims in syrup and turn right-side up an allow to drip down the sides)
green maraschino cherries
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all of the ingredients. Shake vigorously to froth the pineapple juice and strain into an ice filled highball glass rimmed with sugar blood. Serve with a green maraschino cherry and an orange wedge.
The secret to creating glowing cocktails is simply tonic water. The quinine in tonic water, which gives it it’s bitter flavoring also gives it a florescent glow when placed under UV lights. It is the perfect ghostly-glow for a Halloween themed cocktail. A simple gin or vodka and tonic will do the trick or try some of my favorite glowing cocktails for a spectacular Halloween treat!
In order to make punch florescent, you need to use at least 50% tonic water for the recipe. To balance the bitterness, I mix it with pineapple juice, tripple sec (for sweetness) and fresh lime juice. The spirit is up to you. I prefer Ketel One Vodka, but Don Julio Blanco Tequila works too!
To creep-it-up a notch, create glowing “severed hands” by freezing flat tonic water in latex gloves (w/o talc powder) to give the punch an extra-spooky look while keeping it cold. Make sure to place the punch bowl right underneath a couple of black lights to get the maximum glow.
For the severed-hand ice cubes:
Line a baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper and set aside. Fill 1 glove with about 1 1/2 cups of the flat tonic water. Squeeze out as much air as possible and close the opening of the glove tightly with a rubber band. Lay the glove flat on the prepared baking sheet and repeat with the second glove. Place in the freezer until solid, at least overnight. The severed hands will need to freeze overnight, so be sure to make them at least 1 day before you plan to serve the punch.
* Pro-tip: To quickly flatten the tonic water for the severed-hand ice cubes, place it in a container and agitate until bubbly. Repeat several times until almost no bubbles remain. Alternatively, pour it into a container, loosely cover, and let sit overnight at room temperature.
For the punch:
Place the Ketel One Vodka, Cointreau, lime juice, and pineapple juice in a 3-1/2-quart container and stir to combine. Refrigerate until chilled, about 2 to 3 hours.
When ready to serve the punch, remove the severed-hand ice cubes from the freezer. Let it sit about 3 to 5 minutes at room temperature to help loosen the rubber gloves. Meanwhile, add the tonic to the punch mixture and gently stir to combine. Cut away and discard the rubber gloves (use extra care around the fingers). Place the ice-cube hands in the punch and serve underneath black lights.
Jell-O is an American desert classic and Jell-O shots are nothing new… BUT Glow Jell-O is truly out-of-this-world! It’s not a trick, but tonic that makes the Jell-O glow. It is a simple recipe that replaces cold water with cold tonic (with bubbles) that makes is glow under UV light (aka black light). Adding a clear spirit to make adult version of Glow Jell-O!
1 package of Island Pineapple Jell-O
1 cup Ketel One Vodka (you can substitute extra tonic for the vodka if you want to make non-alcohol)
Juice of 1 large lime
1 cup tonic water (chilled before use, if possible)
8 lime slices, to garnish (optional)
Pour the Jell-O into a large heatproof bowl. Pour 1/2 cup of vodka over the gelatin and leave for a few minutes so the gelatin dissolves. Put the bowl in a microwave and heat on high power for 1½ minutes and stir until the gelatin has completely dissolved. Don’t let it boil.
Stir the remaining vodka and the lemon juice into the gelatin, then add the chilled tonic water, pouring it in as carefully as you can to keep it from fizzing (you want to lock in all those bubbles).
*Pro-tip: If you are using non-silicon molds, lightly grease them inside using vegetable oil on a piece of paper towels. Silicone molds don’t need greasing.
Pour the mixture, equally carefully, into your gelatin molds or glasses, garnish with lemon slices, if using, and place in the fridge to set for about 6 hours.
Serve under UV light. The darker it is, the better the effect, so serve at night, with the lights turned out and the UV bulb as close to the Jell-O as possible!
Use fun molds like these bat ice cube trays to make the Glow Jell-O more fun!
Morticia, the beautiful wife of Gomez Addams and mother to Wednesday and Pugsley, enjoys spending her time in the garden, cutting the heads off her roses and leaving only the stems.
The Black Rose
5 oz Champagne Flute
1 oz Smirnoff Vodka
1 oz Pom Juice
½ oz Rose sherbet
Splash of Moet & Chandon Rose Imperial
Measure 1 oz of Smirnoff Vodka, 1 oz Pom Juice and ½ oz Rose sherbet into a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake until the vodka and juice are blended. Strain the contents into a champagne glass and fill with Champagne on the top of the glass.
Pumpkin flavored macaroons decorated with whimsical jack-o-lantern faces
Payard Pumpkin Macaroons
Wilton Ready to Use Icing Tubes – Available in numerous colors
Purchase your favorite Pumpkin Macaroons from Payard or a local bakery. Using Ready to Use Icing Tubes from Wilton, decorate each macaroon with a whimsical jack-o-lantern face.
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If you missed Mark’s Father’s Day Segment on Better TV or you missed Father’s Day and still need to get your dad a present, you can catch the clip on Mark’s vimeo channel! Click here to get to watch it now!
Mark will be on Better TV on Friday for a segment on Father’s Day. Check your local listings here to see what time it’ll air in your city!
Father’s Day is right around the corner and if you’ve got a dad who loves to entertain or loves to be entertained, then this is for you. Entertaining is all about having the right tools and I’ve got three things you can get to help him out.
If your dad is a Grillmeister or the King of barbequing, here’s the perfect present for him. This grilling must-have is called the ManGrate, a grilling enhancement system that sits on top of any grill and turns aluminum grills into pro grills. It not only holds in the heat, but it sears the meat and locks in the flavor, leaving you with perfectly cooked chicken, burgers, steak and even fish! In honor of Father’s Day, ManGrate is having a special, which can be found here.
If your dad likes to turn the heat up on something other than the grill, Tabasco sauce is a great option for him since it comes in several different flavors. Find the recipe for grilled chicken skewers–both Tabasco and honey bourbon here.
For the dads who like to shake it up, there are a few essentials that can help him out. A cocktail shaker, muddler and classic glassware like martini glasses, highball glasses for mixed drinks and rocks glasses for drinks over ice are all necessities.
If he already has these tools, he might need something like an all-American bourbon whiskey as his drink’s main ingredient. My Dad’s Day favorite is Russell’s Reserve, which was actually created by the father-son duo Jimmy and Eddie Russell. The two are partnering with Operation Once in a Lifetime, a nonprofit that raises money to provide free flights home to U.S. military service members stationed around the world. During the month of June, a portion of Russell’s Reserve sales will be donated to this cause.
Find the recipes for the mad men bourbon cocktails pictured above here.
Lastly, a great present for the caffeinated dad who loves his coffee and doesn’t want just an ordinary cup of Joe would be the new Nespresso Pixie.
It not only has the fastest brewing time of 25 seconds, but it’s smart and lets you know your now—switches off automatically and lets you know when water needs to be added. The Pixie is also small and has a great design, so if you have a travelling dad, he can take it with him wherever he goes!
It’s also stylish and it’s offered in several different colors as well as versatile in that your dad can make several different drinks including a cappuccino with a milk frother, a latte, a macchiato, and even an espresso martini if he wants a little kick with his drink. Find the recipe for an orange espresso martini here.
The Thirtini was the signature cocktail created with SKYY Vodka for the guests this August at The Thirteen Summer House on Fire Island, NY. This is a one-of-a-kind cocktail creation that uses such varied ingredients as cucumber, lavender and citrus juices to create what we think is the number one tipple of the summer. Cucumber is a great summertime cocktail addition because it’s so refreshing and re-hydrating. I’ve always said, hydration is key when entertaining outdoors so cool your guests off this herbal infusion at your next summer party.
1.5 oz. SKYY Vodka
1.5 oz orange juice
.5 lemon juice
(Santa Cruz lemon juice by the bottle is an acceptable alternative)
6 thinly sliced cucumber wheels
1.5 oz. homemade lavender syrup*
* For the syrup
1 cup of water
1 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon of whole lavender flowers
Make the Lavender Syrup in advance:
In a small saucepan combine water the sugar and place it over medium high heat. As soon as the syrup comes to a full boil and the sugar is completely dissolved, add the lavender flowers, push them under the surface with a spoon, and immediately remove the pan from the heat. Cover the pan and let the herb steep in the sugar water for 30 minutes. Pour the syrup through a fine sieve and press down firmly on the herbs with a back of a spoon to extract any syrup that is held in the leaves. Store in a covered bottle or jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
Mix all the ingredients together in a shaker and add ice. Shake hard for 30 seconds until the cucumber wheels break up. Strain over fresh cubed ice and garnish with either a thin stick of cucumber or 1 sprig of fresh lavender.