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Verses from my Kitchen: Cocktail: Spiced Orange Crunk Punch

December 29, 2011

Cocktail: Spiced Orange Crunk Punch

This is the end. Quite nearly. The holidays will soon unfold and give way to a new season. A new lease and beginning. A chance to clean the slate and make a new mark, to do things right or better. In a few short days we will celebrate the year that was and the possibilities that lurk ahead. It's a chance to set your goals and think big, the only limit being your imagination. So set it free and let it soar.

Normally by now my holidays would have ended with the passing of Christmas, but this year is different. Thankfully. Work can wait. My holidays will extend until the new year and because of that it will give me a chance to spend some quality time with W and the dog, work away in the kitchen and get some rest. All of those things are long overdue. And I've been looking forward to this retreat for months.

We love the holidays in my house. We race to put up the tree early and the decor undergoes a transformation by early December. We enjoy the music, company, food and family that goes hand in hand with this time of year. And when we have a few extra days to ourselves we usually take advantage of them. And that's what we plan on doing. Each day. Every chance.

When I was first of age I lived for New Year's Eve. I was young and figured the best way to spend an evening celebrating the end of a year was with a few friends and a sea of strangers in a smoky, alcohol fuelled bar. Heavy door fees, overpriced drinks and food and lack of intimacy quickly changed all that. My priorities shifted as my plans did. Out with the new.

Before I met W I opted to stay in for a few years. Yes, usually celebrating alone. I'd rent a movie and watch the shows countdown the end of one miserable year after another. I'm so glad those years are behind me. Yes, I was happy. Just not always with myself. So I chose to spend it alone. Misery needs no company.

After I met and married W things slowly shifted back. For the first few years we spent Old Year's Night inside together. A romantic night for two. A lovely dinner and a movie and time spent with the most important person I know. Her. This was how I envisioned it all those years before. Alone. And for the first few years that's what we did.

Although I still prefer a quiet night in over the alternative, I still appreciate the efforts some go to for the biggest night of the year. So this year we'll be joining friends up the street for a party with great food and company. I'll bring some party food over and make another batch of this drink. I like it call it my Spiced Orange Crunk Punch.

It's been quite the year, which I'll recap in my next post. But, in the end, it all stops and starts with family and friends. So I plan on spending my last night of the year celebrating with them. And I'll look forward to the next day and a new lease on the road I travel on. Sometimes less, sometimes more.

This is the end. Nearly. Some people will write out long lists of new years resolutions. Some will choose to stay the course and steer clear of that. Some will spend the night alone and others will join forces with people in their dearest circle. I plan on going out like I started this year. With so much promise. And my wife by side.

From my kitchen to yours,


Spiced Orange Crunk Punch

  • 3 cups orange juice
  • 1 1/2 cups orange mineral water
  • 1/8 cup lime juice
  • 2 tbsp. simple syrup
  • 2 ounces soda
  • 6 dashes bitters
  • 2 tbsp. grenadine
  • 6 ounces of Spiced Rum
  • 2 sprigs of mint
  • 3 large orange zest, garnish
  • 2 sprigs of mint, garnish
  1. Add crushed ice to a pitcher and add in the first 9 ingredients. Use a masher to smash up the mint. Stir.
  2. Fill three glasses with crushed ice and pour drink over top. Top with a piece of orange zest and add in a mint sprig.
  3. Serves 3.


At December 29, 2011 at 9:51 AM , Blogger Plateful said...

What a beautiful post in every sense, Mike! And I'm so inspired by your pictures.

Best wishes for a fruitful New Year to you and yours!

At December 29, 2011 at 10:30 AM , Anonymous jenna said...

i hope you enjoy your break! happy new year!

At December 29, 2011 at 5:31 PM , Anonymous Heidi @foodiecrush said...

Lovely, thoughtful post Michael. Have a wondrous New Year.

At December 30, 2011 at 8:18 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i always enjoy your posts.. i could read them on and on like a good book. You have such a gift for writing and cooking. All the wonderful best of things to come your way! Happy New Year to you!

At December 30, 2011 at 3:13 PM , Anonymous Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} said...

A wonderful post and usual Mike!
Happy new year to you too. Can't wait to see what 2012 has in store

At December 30, 2011 at 10:19 PM , Anonymous Lynn @ I'll Have What She's Having said...

I've always found New Years to best with close friends, a good meal, and a few good drinks. The crowded bars and overpriced drinks never seemed to live up to the expectations.
This drink sounds like a great way to ring in 2012. Have a very happy new year!


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