Hi all! If you’re a reader of my blog you know that I love to take trips to H-Mart, a huge Asian market on the outskirts of Atlanta. During one of my recent trips I was perusing the produce section when I spotted a strange bundle of long yellow-green sticks tied up with a rubber band. It was lemongrass! Even though I’ve eaten so many dishes with lemongrass, I’d never actually seen it in its original form. It was cheap and looked intriguing so I bought it, even though I had absolutely no plans to use it in a recipe.
So it’s no surprise that a few weeks later the lemongrass was still in my fridge, taking up the entire width of a shelf. I didn’t want it to go bad but I had no idea what to do with it…then I remembered what I had done with my lavender-turned it into a syrup for cocktails!
I got the recipe from Saveur, since I knew nothing about the preparation of lemongrass. For the cocktail which I have aptly/cheesily/probably not originally named the My Thai cocktail, I muddled Thai Basil with vodka, added lime, lemongrass syrup, and topped it off with soda water. I think cucumber vodka would also be amazing with this!
My Thai Cocktail
1 1/2 oz vodka or cucumber vodka
3/4 oz (half a shot glass) of lemongrass syrup (recipe at end)
a twist of fresh lime
3-4 thai basil leaves (italian basil will work but it will be less Thai-tasting)
peeled lemongrass and thai basil leaves for garnish
1. Muddle thai basil leaves in the vodka with a wooden spoon for about 10 seconds. Strain thai basil leaves out of vodka.
2. Shake the vodka, lemongrass syrup, a few drops of fresh lime juice, and ice in a shaker.
3. Pour out mixture in glass and top with soda water.
Lemongrass syrup recipe (Saveur)
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 lemongrass stalks (sliced), core only
1. Combine sugar, water, and sliced lemongrass core in a small saucepan. Simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring to dissolve sugar.
2. Remove from heat and cool. Fill a jar with a few lemongrass stalks. Strain syrup into jar. Cover and keep in the refrigerator.