The week had been an exhausting one. Work has been challenging, there was an impending snowstorm be excited about and then let down by and a huge grant to recover from. There were deadlines, bills and paper rewrites. By the time Friday afternoon rolled around the idea of spending the evening out and about had zero appeal. So, on my way home from work I swung by whole foods for some rations. Olives, pickles, popcorn, kale chips and a little soppresatta seemed like a perfectly reasonable dinner.
While I was there, I noticed it was still blood orange season. They had the most perfect blood orange cut in half on display, practically screaming to be made into some sort of cocktail. So I snagged four of them and headed to the register.
By the time I got home, I realized that a drink of decent strength was needed to soften the exit from the workday (that was a poetic way of saying that a glass of wine wasn't going to cut it) so I set my sights on some bourbon, my drink of choice when the going gets tough.
At first, my plan was to juice the oranges and use it as a mixer with some fresh mint but that sounded sort of meh and I was in the mood for something a bit more bracing. While it would probably make for a delicious drink, I was planning to use a pretty good bourbon and didn't want to completely cover the flavor with juice and herbs. So, the blood orange old fashioned was born.
|Why yes, I am still using my Christmas table cloth... thanks for asking!|
Burnt Sugar Blood Orange Old Fashioned
2 ounces whiskey (rye or bourbon – I used Black Maple Hill Bourbon Whiskey)
1 teaspoon of granulated sugar
2 dashes Angostura bitters
2 Blood Orange wedges
Maraschino cherry (I didn't have any of these sadly)
2 teaspoon blood orange juice (for muddling)
Sprinkle the sugar on top of the blood orange wedges. Hit them quickly with a culinary torch (as if you are making creme brulee topping) until they start to caramelize. If you don't have a culinary torch (thanks adam!) you can stick them under your broiler (on high) as close as you can get them for a minute or two. Drop the cooled orange wedges in the bottom of an Old-Fashioned glass. Add the bitters and juice directly to the sugar on the fruit so that they begin to absorb. Muddle with the back of a spoon or a muddler. Add the whiskey and one or two large ice cubes. Stir gently. Garnish with a thinly sliced blood orange. You can top with a splash of seltzer if you like but that would make you a pansy.