Festivus! Celebration! Libation! Partying Dooooown! So much of that over the last couple of weeks. Staying around the Bay Area was a lovely gift, although we missed out on seeing some friends and family from afar, there is something special about nesting at home, celebrating with those that didn’t join the exodus out of the city and not having to travel during the holidays. We took it a few steps further and had a little New Year’s Eve cocktail hour at our home with some friends and neighbors before we headed across the hall for more debauchery.
In the food department I kept things simple but did take the time to make some Fancy Jelly Shots. This was my first attempt and they turned out dangerously delicious. Beware because these are strong.
I doubled the recipe for both shots that I made because, well, it was for a party! I decided to go with a version of the French 75, a yummy classic champagne based cocktail with gin and lemon (adapted from The Jelly Shot Test Kitchen), and I also wanted to turn my signature cocktail, The Saint Teresa, into a jelly shot.
The French 75 Jelly Shot
2/3 cup lemonade concentrate
2/3 cup water
5 envelopes Knox gelatin
1 1/3 cup gin
1 1/3 cup flat champagne – this minimizes bubbling and imperfections
2 tsp. sugar – if desired to sweeten them up, I didn’t add it but a tsp of agave would have been good
Lemon twists for garnish
I made my jelly shots extra firm so that they would have staying power. Combine the lemonade concentrate and water in a saucepan, add the gelatin and stir it in a bit, then turn on the heat to low and stir constantly until the gelatin is dissolved and smooth. This should only take about 5 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and add the gin and champagne. Get your 9 inch square pan ready and pour the mixture in an even layer. Stick in the fridge and chill overnight or at least for 4 or 5 hours. I put mine in at 10:00 am and they were easily done by 4pm. Slice into desired shapes using a sharp knife. I heated my knife under hot water much like you might do when you cut a cake in order to make the jelly cut easier. You can kind of finger them out of the pan or use a soft spatula. They should be incredibly firm. I then garnished with my lemon twists.
The Saint Teresa Jelly Shot
2 1/2 cups grapefruit juice
1 1/2 cup lavender infused vodka (Learn how to make it here.)
2 tbsp grenadine
2 tsp. agave nectar, light
5 envelopes Knox gelatin
Add the grapefruit juice, grenadine and agave to a sauce pan and stir in the gelatin until it absorbs some liquid, turn the heat to low and stir constantly until all the gelatin is dissolved. As above, this should only take 5 minutes or so. Remove from heat and stir in the vodka. Pour into a 9 inch square pan, stick in the fridge and let sit over night or for a few hours so they are firm.
Plate on a fancy platter and garnish with a seasonal berry! Encourage guests to limit their intake or not, depending on the type of party you want to have. Cheers!
Guests also enjoyed matching, non-jelly French 75 and Saint Teresa cocktails!