Belizean 75

This drink is brought to you with so much looooove.

Belizean 75 | CaliGirlCooking.com

I know Valentine’s Day is behind us, but this Belizean 75 holds a very special place in my heart for multiple reasons.

First, you all know that the French 75 is one of the hubs’ and my absolute favorite cocktails, so much so that it was one of the two signature drinks we served at our wedding. I mean, anything involving both bubbles AND gin is a winner in my book. I love them both to pieces.

Second, we first got to taste a “Belizean 75” on our honeymoon shortly thereafter which, although not quite what we expected, did have a few fond memories going for it. This drink is definitely one of them and I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to make my own version at home.

I ordered the Belizean 75 the day we got back to our resort after being evacuated due to the hurricane, and, let me tell you, after being stuck in a $100 a night eco-lodge that flooded and had no power OR water after the storm hit it was like tasting the nectar of the Gods. Forget the plentiful glasses of red wine and steaming seafood platters that were constants at our Francis Coppola-owned resort, I just wanted this incredibly cool and refreshing cocktail on repeat.

Belizean 75 | CaliGirlCooking.com

The main difference between a Belizean 75 and a French 75 is that local rum is used in place of gin, and any variety of local citrus is used in place of the standard lemon juice. I’m not too sure what variety of citrus they used at the Turtle Inn, but I had some blood oranges laying around and boy, did they add just the right zing of color to this cocktail!

I love this cocktail because it is incredibly easy to make and uses very few ingredients, ones you’ll likely have on hand already without requiring an extra trip to the store. All you’re going to need is sparkling wine, rum and fresh-squeezed citrus juice! I would just recommend that whatever citrus juice you use isn’t too tart, since there is no added sweetener in this drink (bonus – less of a hangover the next day!)

Belizean 75 | CaliGirlCooking.com

The blood oranges I used were perfect and lent that lovely pinkish hue. Despite what it looks like in the photos, I did use the exact same amount of blood orange juice in each drink, the pulp of one of the blood oranges was just a lot darker than the other. But that’s nature for ya!

Now I know today isn’t a “special” Friday per se (although if you ask me, every Friday is pretty dang special) but that’s no excuse to forego making a Belizean 75 or two. Whether you’re getting together with girlfriends or just want an easy at-home Happy Hour drink for you and your honey, this cocktail will do the trick. And with another round of nasty weather headed our way, I’d say we need as many tropical drinks as we can get to make us forget all the rain. Am I right?

Belizean 75 | CaliGirlCooking.com

Stay safe and dry this weekend my friends! Xx

Belizean 75 | CaliGirlCooking.com
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Belizean 75
Prep Time
5 mins
 

This cocktail is a fun, tropical riff on the classic French 75, using local rum instead of gin and fresh blood orange juice instead of lemon. The ultimate refresher!

Course: Drinks
Servings: 1 cocktail
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1 ounce fresh blood orange juice (or other fresh citrus juice)
  • 1 ounce rum
  • 4 ounces sparkling wine
Instructions
  1. Combine orange juice and rum in the bottom of a champagne flute. Slowly pour the sparkling wine over top. Garnish with a blood orange wheel, if desired.

Belizean 75 | CaliGirlCooking.com

Honey Citrus Detox Elixir

Because sometimes you just need a drink that makes you feel GOOD.

Honey Citrus Detox Elixir | CaliGirlCooking.com
This is another in a series of posts I’ve done in partnership with Sonoma Syrup Co. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that make CaliGirl Cooking possible!

I’m mixing things up today by bringing you what I believe turned out to be a phenomenal “mocktail.” This Honey Citrus Detox Elixir will leave you feeling healthy, refreshed and energized for whatever your day has in store for you.  It’s good for both your body and your tastebuds, and I promise you won’t even notice that there’s no alcohol involved.

What IS involved is Sonoma Syrup Co.’s Organic Apple Cider Infused Drinking Vinegar, which I have fallen deeply in love with ever since I started my partnership with them almost a year ago. Funny story about said apple cider vinegar: when I first got my hands on a bottle, I got so excited by seeing the words “with Lemon and Vanilla” in small print on the label that I quickly took a big glug to taste. Mmmmm…not the smartest move. It tasted like a darn good version of apple cider vinegar, but it was still vinegar and my face proceeded to screw up into a tight pucker.

BUT, the next morning, I added it to my usual lemon water concoction (let me know if you’re interested in seeing the recipe!) and O.M.G. Amaze-balls. Seriously, when combined with everything else and warmed up a little bit, it actually made my morning libation pleasing to sip on rather than chugging it all down as quickly as possible.

So, when Sonoma Syrup Co. approached me about making a drink using their Organic Apple Cider Infused Drinking Vinegar, I jumped at the chance. I was so excited to try out some other flavor combinations to showcase the uniqueness of this product, and this Honey Citrus Detox Elixir is the ultra-tasty, body cleansing result.

Honey Citrus Detox Elixir | CaliGirlCooking.com

To give you a quick overview, apple cider vinegar has been on the up-and-up in the health and wellness scenes for the last couple of years, and for good reason. It promotes healthy cholesterol, can aid in weight loss and improves nutrient absorption, among other things. Experts in the health community recommend anywhere from one teaspoon to one tablespoon per day (best if mixed with water or other liquids,) so mix up a Honey Citrus Detox Elixir and you’ll have all of the recommended ACV (along with a healthy dose of Vitamin C from the oranges and lemon) that you need in a day.

I used all-natural products for this elixir, no artificial or processed ingredients whatsoever. We’re talking fresh squeezed OJ and lemon juice (many thanks to our landlords who decided to plant a plethora of citrus trees on our property a couple of years ago,) local honey for some sweetness, and turmeric and cinnamon to add even more anti-inflammatory and metabolism-boosting benefits.

Honey Citrus Detox Elixir | CaliGirlCooking.com

I don’t know about you, but I think I may be turning to a Honey Citrus Detox Elixir as my drink of choice a bit more often for the foreseeable future. You know I’m all about that balance after all, and when there’s a non-alcoholic option that’s THIS good, you’ll hardly even miss the buzz, and won’t even have to worry about a hangover tomorrow morning!

Honey Citrus Detox Elixir | CaliGirlCooking.com
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Honey Citrus Detox Elixir
Prep Time
5 mins
 

A fun, healthy and delicious mocktail that will boost your metabolism and deliver a healthy punch of Vitamin C, the perfect drink for this time of year!

Course: Drinks
Servings: 1 drink
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice (the juice from about 3 oranges)
  • 1 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Sonoma Syrup Co. Organic Apple Cider Infused Drinking Vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously for about 20 seconds, then pour into a glass. If honey sticks to bottom of cocktail shaker, simply scoop out and stir into the poured drink (as much as possible.)

Honey Citrus Detox Elixir | CaliGirlCooking.com

 

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like:

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler

How many reasons do we need to celebrate?

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler | CaliGirlCooking.com

This post is brought to you in partnership with Drizly. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that make CaliGirl Cooking possible!

Not too many, in my book, especially at this time of year! That’s why I’m so excited to be partnering with my friends at Drizly once again to bring you this super-festive Citrus Vanilla Sparkler. It’s perfect for Christmas, New Year’s and any other time you have a little something to celebrate.

If you know me, you know I’m a huge fan of sparkling wine in any way, shape or form. Most of the time, I’m a straight-up bubbles kind of gal, occasionally adding a splash of OJ if it’s before noon (just to be able to call it “breakfast.”) But every once in a while (oh hello, holidays) I want to spice things up a bit and make something that’s truly show stopping. This Citrus Vanilla Sparkler is just that!

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler | CaliGirlCooking.com

The combination of fresh orange and lemon juice, easy-to-make vanilla simple syrup, gin and sparkling wine is the perfect complement to any celebration. It’s festive and tastes incredibly complex, yet is so simple to make, with just a few ingredients.

Speaking of ingredients, what if I told you you could have all of the ingredients you need to make this Citrus Vanilla Sparkler delivered right to your door in no time at all? Thanks to Drizly, this is a complete reality. All you’ve got to do is head to their website, order all of the ingredients (yes, even the oranges and lemons!) and they’ll deliver them straight to you. Mixing up some fab cocktails on any given night has never been so easy.

So let’s talk a little bit about my inspiration for this cocktail. It’s no secret that Christmas is right around the corner, but I’ve felt a bit over-saturated with cranberry, peppermint and pomegranate recipes in the past few weeks. I wanted to come up with a festive sparkling wine cocktail that would be perfectly fitting for the Christmas holiday, but would be something you’d want to make for New Year’s and beyond as well.

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler | CaliGirlCooking.com

To me, citrus and vanilla were the perfect answers. If you’re familiar with sparkling wine cocktails, you may have gathered that this Citrus Vanilla Sparkler is based off of the OG French 75, with a little extra twist. I’ve LOVED French 75’s for as long as I can remember (they were a specialty cocktail at our wedding, after all) and I’ll take any excuse to make a new version of the classic. Let me tell you, after making this Citrus Vanilla Sparkler, I may never be going back!

The only (semi-) complicated part about this recipe is the vanilla simple syrup, and by “complicated,” I mean you’re going to have to watch some sugar, water and vanilla bean seeds boil on the stove for about 15 minutes. Orrrr, you could make it even easier and simply add some vanilla extract to a pre-made simple syrup. Sounds manageable, right?

After you have your vanilla simple syrup in hand, all you have to do is combine the orange and lemon juices, gin and syrup in a cocktail shaker with some ice, give them a good shake, add them to a glass and top with sparkling wine. Deliciousness is yours in five minutes or less.

Now, I don’t know about you but I’m ready to get this weekend started. We’ve got Christmas parties up the wazoo, my mom’s in town visiting, and we’ll be getting organized for our trip up north next week! I think a Citrus Vanilla Sparkler is just what this night needs to get us going in the right direction. Happy Friday friends!

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler | CaliGirlCooking.com

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Citrus Vanilla Sparkler
Prep Time
5 mins
 

This spin on the classic French 75 combines fresh lemon AND orange juices, gin and vanilla simple syrup, all topped with sparkling wine. 

Course: Drinks
Servings: 1 cocktail
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1 ounce gin (I used Hendrick's)
  • 3/4 ounce vanilla simple syrup (see Recipe Notes)
  • 1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1 ounce fresh orange juice
  • 3 ounces dry sparkling wine (I used Nicola Feuillatte Champagne)
Instructions
  1. Combine gin, simple syrup, lemon and orange juices in a cocktail shaker with some ice. Shake vigorously for about 15 seconds.

  2. Strain into champagne flutes or coupes (minimizing the amount of ice that gets through) and top with sparkling wine. 

Recipe Notes

To make the vanilla simple syrup, combine equal parts sugar and water in a small saucepan with the seeds of a vanilla bean scraped into it. Stir and bring to a boil, then let simmer until reduced and syrupy, about 15 minutes. Alternatively, you can add some vanilla extract to pre-made simple syrup.

Citrus Vanilla Sparkler | CaliGirlCooking.com

Blood Orange Margarita

It’s been a long week so we’re taking it back to the basics.

Blood Orange Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

Well, as basic as a Blood Orange Margarita can get. I wanted to hustle and share this recipe with all of you because the end of blood orange season is rapidly approaching (waaaaahhhh), which makes this all the better cocktail to whip up this weekend since blood oranges should be super sweet and delicious right now. The other bonus? You probably already have all of the other ingredients on hand in your kitchen. Plus, I realize that my Recipe Index is seriously lacking in tequila-based drinks…Sorry to all my tequila-lovers out there!

Before I get to the recipe, let me tell you a little bit about what inspired it. These past few months (okay, maybe six months) have been more than a little hectic. Between traveling up to Northern California for wedding planning and other family duties, working full time, doing my best to get a workout in every day, saving money for, well #life, and trying to be more dedicated to this blog that I love, I have had to put a lot of little things on the back burner. Don’t get me wrong, I have LOVED making a more serious commitment to CaliGirl Cooking , but I don’t want to lie and make it sound easy. It’s hard work, but its work that I love.

Blood Orange Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

Anyhow, I digress. One of these things that I have put on the back burner is (insert monkey covering eyes emoji here) going to the Farmer’s Market. Yes, something as simple as that. As a big proponent of recipes for a balanced life, I try to use as many fresh ingredients I can, but with the limited time I have to work on the blog and get out to purchase my ingredients, sadly my grocery-shopping window and Farmer’s Market times have not been jiving. This has been a huge disappointment to me since I LOVE going to Farmer’s Markets, checking out the local, in-season produce and supporting my local peeps.

BUT! But, but, but…I’m so happy to say that I made it to the Farmer’s Market not once, but twice this week already! Until this week I really hadn’t realized how much I’d been missing it. Maybe it’s just that this time of year is one of THE best times of the year for Farmer’s Markets (hello, spring!), but I soaked it all in, bought a lot of produce, and am definitely going to make more of an effort to get to at least one Farmer’s Market a week. We’re so lucky to live in Santa Barbara where there’s a market almost every day in a different location (year round! Sorry, had to rub that in) that this really should not be a hard goal for me to accomplish.

I have more posts scheduled to highlight some of the other delicious items I found on my forays to the Farmer’s Market, but amongst the bounty that I brought home this week was a lovely little pint of fresh-squeezed blood orange and tangerine juice from one of the local citrus vendors. Now, I know it is SUPER easy to make fresh-squeezed blood orange juice on your own, but I was a sucker for the sign on the table that said “Only for a limited time, when in season.” I know, I know, what great marketing. I figured if nothing else the juice would be a great addition to our morning mimosas. Who knew the rest of it would turn into Blood Orange Margaritas? I’ll tell ya, we do what we can to avoid any waste by turning any and all leftovers into a cocktail 😉

Blood Orange Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

Now, I know you’re thinking, you just said you BOUGHT the blood orange-tangerine juice and didn’t make it yourself? But guys and gals, that’s the beauty of the Farmer’s Market, someone else (yes, a human, not a machine) made this juice with their own two hands. And it is fresh, and it is delicious, and by golly I am going to make something of it.

And make something of it I did. This Blood Orange Margarita is soooo simple and only requires four ingredients. That’s right, just four! (Well, five if you count ice.) We take white tequila, Cointreau, our fresh-squeezed blood orange juice, and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Mix these all in a margarita glass (or whatever you have on hand) with ice and you are good to go!

Our Blood Orange Margarita has the perfect balance of tang and sweetness, and the white tequila comes through beautifully with every sip.  As a huge fan of margaritas, that’s a definite win in my book. Even better, it takes only five minutes (or less) to make!

Blood Orange Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

Now, I don’t know about you, but I think I’m going to go raid all of our Farmer’s Markets, Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods for the last of the blood oranges because I plan on making myself some Blood Orange Margaritas to sip on for as long as I can make them last. Care to join me?

Blood Orange Margarita

Yield: Makes one cocktail

A perfectly balanced margarita utilizing a favorite seasonal fruit.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces white tequila
  • 1 ounce Cointreau
  • 2 ounces fresh-squeezed blood orange juice
  • Squeeze of fresh lime juice (about ¼ of a lime)

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to a margarita or rocks glass filled ¾ of the way with ice. Stir to combine and garnish with a lime wedge.
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Blood Orange Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

Tequilaaaaaaaaa!!!