We know the weather is changeable but with the Chelsea Flower Show and the Chelsea Fringe now in full swing, it’s time to think about the garden.
We love the warm weather, being able to potter in the garden and enjoy eating al fresco. Of course the experience is even better with a refreshing, cool drink!
While we’re very happy with a cold glass of Prosecco, the current drink of choice, there are some lovely ways to enjoy the garden in your drinks!
You might want to jazz up your Prosecco with some peach juice to make a Bellini. Use fresh peaches and whizz them in your blender. Of course you probably don’t have a peach tree growing in your garden but hey ho, it’s a great drink.
Pour your Prosecco or Champagne onto a couple of drops of rose water and hibiscus syrup and a whole Hibiscus flower. Enjoy.
The obvious one is Pimms, traditionally linked to the Wimbledon Tennis Championships which is also only a few weeks away. Mint is the must-have accompaniment for Pimms along with slices of cumber and strawberries. Mint is one of the easiest herbs to grow in your garden – containing it is more difficult. We recommend growing it in a pot. Those of you with green fingers and greenhouses may manage a harvest of strawberries and cucumber as well but if not, there are plentiful supplies at the supermarket.
Mix about 5 blackberries per glass with some Rose Geranium syrup and lemon juice. Add gin and strain over a glassful of cool ice cubes. Perfect.
Lavender Bee’s Knees
The clue to the magic ingredient is in the name! Mix a measure of gin with lavender honey syrup and lemon juice. Serve with a sprig of lavender. Simple and sweet with a kick.
Frozen Hibiscus Margaritas
A mix of warm hibiscus and vanilla pod syrup (strained) with tequila, orange juice, lime juice and zest. Allow to chill completely. Serve chilled or frozen by adding to an ice-cream maker and churning for 20 minutes.
For extra pizzazz, dip the glass rims in a mixture of salt and lime zest.
Add shredded basil and mint leaves to the cocktail shaker along with lemon juice and zest, white grape juice, elderflower cordial, the all important vodka and ice. Serve with a slice of cucumber and a basil leaf.
Make a lemon syrup (lemon juice and peel plus sugar and water) using 2 – 3 lemons, 2 cups of water and 1.5 cups of sugar. Use this mixture when cooled like a cordial and add fizzy water to it for a long cool drink. Grownups can add gin if they must!
N.B.To make a simple syrup mix equal parts sugar and water over heat to dissolve sugar and infuse with the flower of your choice.
The perfect spot
Now find the perfect spot in the garden to enjoy your drinks. If your garden needs a revamp, visit Livinghouse for all your paving supplies.