Colorful & comforting seasonal recipes for savory dishes, sweets and cocktails. 

Rhubarb Strawberry Sorbet & Champagne Cocktail

Rhubarb Strawberry Sorbet & Champagne Cocktail

I had it in my head that once graduate school classes finished for the semester life would slow down just a bit. Ha! Rookie mistake. That said, lately has been really lovely and I'm quite grateful as I consider the weeks ahead. Next weekend I'll be heading to Monterey, California to be part of the barista team at TEDWomen 2015. I'm fortunate for the opportunity to work alongside some amazing women of the coffee industry for this event, and to serve coffee to incredible women leaders who will be sharing their words and inspiration. The focus of this year's TEDWomen is momentum. 

"TEDWomen 2015 will explore how change begins: with innovative thinkers who share big ideas and catalyze action toward them. In others words: with momentum. In this year’s program we’ll hear from scientists, entrepreneurs, doctors, artists and activists with the kind of ideas that ignite imaginations. What will happen from there? TEDWomen 2015 is a chance for you to be a part of the story."

I find the second part of that equation to be the most challenging; not just having big ideas, but also catalyzing action toward them. I look forward to learning from women who've brought their big ideas to life to better the world around them. 

Now, let me ease into a lighter subject and share a cocktail recipe with you. This one is a celebration of the warmer weather. Plants are bursting up from the soil, the parks and walking trails full of activity, and the evening air smells like barbecue. Sorbet and champagne are well-suited for this time of year. This cocktail works well for a group and won't have you tied to the kitchen or the bar when you're hosting. Make the sorbet in advance and the cocktail is as simple as scooping and pouring. -Mallory

Rhubarb Strawberry Sorbet & Champagne Cocktail
1 1/2 cups rhubarb, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 cup cane sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1/2 cup lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
2 cups strawberries, tops removed

Add the chopped rhubarb, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice and 1 cup of water to a medium saucepan. Turn the heat to medium-high. Gently stir as it heats up to dissolve the sugar. Cook for about 10 minutes, until the rhubarb softens, then remove from heat and let cool. 

Once the rhubarb and simple syrup have cooled, puree them with the strawberries in a blender or food processor, making sure that the mixture completely liquifies. If you'd prefer to strain out the strawberry seeds, use a cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer. I rather like them as part of the texture, so I left them in. Next, transfer the soon-to-be sorbet to a glass container and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour. 

Pour the chilled sorbet into an ice cream maker to churn and follow the manufacture's instructions from there.

Transfer the churned sorbet to a lidded container and store it in the coldest part of the freezer for a few hours before serving. 

For the cocktail, add a generous scoop (or two! - yes two) of sorbet to a champagne flute and top with champagne. As with any float, the effervescence requires slow pouring. I found it hard to be patient, but it's worth it. Drink like a float or stir to incorporate the sorbet into the champagne. If you're the person who stirs your ice cream into your root beer float, I'd imagine you'll prefer the latter. Both are delicious. 

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