The Foreplay of Cocktails: Garnish
Creatively accommodating caloric and dietary limitations is a challenge. At under 150 calories per serving this tasty cocktail, comprised of fresh roasted pumpkin, Pyrat rum, "doctored" coconut cream, and spices, sings holiday praises to tastebuds and guests while simultaneously fulfilling all of the craveable flavors of the Thanksgiving season.
Start with the freshest of pumpkins. (Hint: they're pretty much all fresh this time of year but a thump and a sniff will give you confirmation). Fresh, quality ingredients will help ensure that your end product meets and exceeds your expectations. We found Pumpkin Spice Sugar by Spaulding's Specialty Spices to be exceptionally flavorful and balanced.
While the pumpkin cooks, prepare the remainder ingredients if desired. No additional ingredients are necessarily required as Pyrat rum comes with quite a bit of flavor and sweetness on its own. Pyrat rum offers an undeniably smooth and full bodied flavor and mouth-feel at a pocketbook friendly price. However, you may choose to add cinnamon, molasses, honey, nutmeg, ginger, or a variety of other seasonal spices to the mashed pumpkin.
Once your pumpkin is cooked to necessary softness (press the skin with a fork - if it pokes through, it's done), mash the pumpkin with a fork or blender. While your pumpkin cools, decide on glassware and garnish. Because the balance of this cocktail depends on textural creaminess and evenly spaced spices a wide mouthed cocktail glass is best suited. Chill your glassware with ice and water while you prepare the cocktail.
Shake the rum (2 ounces) and pumpkin (1/4 cup). Strain into your chilled cocktail glass. Gently layer the coconut cream (best when freshly emulsified) with a spoon or pipette onto half the cocktail. To obtain this streamline dusting of spice simply press 2 post-its equidistant on the glass before sprinkling the spice. The viscosity differential between the pumpkin and cream will allow the spice to float atop the cocktail and effortlessly guide itself toward the rim with each sip. Aromatics from the pumpkin, spice, and cream can be consumed at the diner's discretion and allows them to control to the amount of sweet and spice in their drink. Now if only we could control all the sweet and spice in our lives!
A Betty (by a broad definition) is honest and brave, loyal and nurturing, witty and fun. She's balanced, quirky, open-minded, complex, and flawed. She's soulful and driven. And I think there's a little Betty in all of us.