DIY Spiced Rum

spicedrum-2
Yo, ho, ho and a bottle of spiced rum! Skip the Captain Morgan, because making your own is so easy. Try your DIY Spiced Rum in a Dark ‘n’ Stormy or any other cocktails you’d normally use the store-bought stuff in.

Spiced Rum
3 cups light rum
1/2 cup gold rum
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
zest of half an orange
1 cinnamon stick
2 cloves
3 allspice berries
1 star anise pod, broken
2 cardamom pods
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, grated
1 slice of ginger, roughly the size of a nickel
3 black peppercorns

Combine ingredients in a glass jar. Let steep for two days. Sample to check flavor and make possible adjustments. Steep for up to five days, shaking daily. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the larger items and then strain again through a coffee filter into a bottle.

The recipe I created and posted here was first published on Serious Eats in my DIY vs. Buy column.

How to Make a Smoldering Halloween Cauldron With Dry Ice

Dry Ice Halloween PunchI played with dry ice! It’s easy to make a smoky, foggy Halloween cauldron for your punch. I’m not that careful and I managed not to get hurt!

You don’t need eye of newt or wing of bat to brew a batch of toil and trouble this Halloween. All you need is some dry ice. This magic ingredient turns an ordinary punch bowl into a bubbling, smoldering cauldron that’s perfect for parties.

Dry Ice Punch Bowl Tutorial at SheKnows

Blood-Red Halloween Punch

halloween_punch_jcrkilIf you’re looking for a fun Halloween punch that isn’t just a novelty drink, try my blood-red punch recipe.

Halloween inspires a lot of cocktails that look creepy but don’t taste like anything you’d go near the rest of the year. Skip the sticky-sweet liqueurs and food coloring. This punch is not only on theme for the holiday, but it’s also a sophisticated and seasonal drink for grown-ups.

Blood-Halloween Punch at SheKnows

How to Create Halloween Cocktails That Aren’t Gross

Stranger Things Cocktails

Cocktails from Hoxton Square’s “Stranger Things” Event

Forget the slasher movies and haunted houses: Nothing is scarier than Halloween cocktails. Every October, candy corn martinis and glow-in-the-dark slime shooters roam the streets looking for their next victim. But a bar menu filled with bad puns and even worse drinks isn’t the way to show guests a good time.

Over at Tales of the Cocktail, I wrote Halloween drinks that aren’t crimes against cocktails.

Blueberry Cocktails

Blueberry Whiskey Buck cocktail

Blueberry Whiskey Buck from Vintage Kitty

I always have blueberries in the fridge or freezer. They’re great for a snack, so why not for a cocktail? Blueberries pair well with many herbs, spices and liquors — which makes them perfect for the cocktail shaker and muddler.

Low-Calorie Blueberry Tarragon Cocktail ~ Fresh blueberries are a great balance of tart and sweet, with tarragon adding a complexity that makes it taste like you added some fancy liqueur to the mix without adding calories.

Blueberry Mint Julep Spritzer ~ All those words sound like deliciousness to me! It’s still warm out and this is a great way to stay cool while enjoying a cocktail.

Blueberry Whiskey Buck ~ Ginger beer and blueberries are a surprisingly fun combination in this any-time drink.

Blueberry Ginger Bellini ~ Add champagne to the great flavor mix of blueberry and ginger and you’re all set for brunch.

Blueberry Gin Sour ~ A silky egg-white foam is the perfect complement to a classic sour that’s souped up with berries.