Cucumber Basil Gimlet

cucumberbasilgimlet

The garden at Savvy Housekeeping is overflowing with cucumbers! So we got together and made this lovely, late-summer cocktail with some of the bounty. It has a delicate and sweet flavor that’s a good antidote to the muggy weather we’re having now. We used lemon cucumbers and purple basil, but you can also use English cucumber and whatever your favorite basil variety is.

Cucumber Basil Gimlet

1 English cucumber or 2-3 small lemon cucumbers
8 basil leaves
1/2 oz fresh lime juice
1/2 oz simple syrup
2 oz gin

Peel the cucumbers, then chop into chunks and discard the peels. Muddle basil, cucumber, lime, and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker. Add ice and gin, then shake for 15-30 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Photo by Savvy Housekeeping

Lychee Gimlet

The lychee is a little bumpy-shelled fruit that houses a gelatinous fruit that surrounds a seed. The flavor of this fruit is like syrupy grape with an exotic twist. Nolet’s Gin sent me a box of lychees and a suggestion for how to use them … a Gimlet made with lychees. How could I resist?

In case you’ve never seen a lychee before (I hadn’t), here’s a box of ‘em:

Now on to the recipe! Instead of boiling the fruit to make a syrup, I muddled it with some simple syrup–which is just a combination of equal parts sugar and water.

Lychee Gimlet

1 1/2 oz. gin (I used Nolet’s, which they kindly sent me as well)
1/2 oz. simple syrup
2 lychees, shelled and pitted
1/2 oz. fresh lime juice

Blend the lychees and simple syrup (makes about 1 1/2 oz. of lychee syrup). Pour into shaker along with gin and lime juice, then add ice and shake. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into coupe or Martini glass. Throw in a shelled and pitted lychee, if desired, or garnish with a lime wheel.