To be completely honest, I don’t drink very often. I have never been able to drink more than a couple glasses of wine before I start feeling dizzy. Lightweight, I know. But every once in a while I like to mess around with cocktails and see what delicious flavor combinations I can come up with using fresh local ingredients.
Enter in: The Apricot Whiskey Sour. Now this drink came about because one day while I was visiting my sister Mia, my grandma showed up with a 20 pound bag of Apricots that she had from the tree in her backyard. Every year her apricot trees graciously over produces the little golden pieces of fruit. It over produced so much that one of the branches from the tree literally broke off due to weight of the apricots! So my grandma picked them off and brought them to us.
Now I decided that I would help my sister out by not leaving the entire bag at her house and I took roughly half of them. And then I thought, “I don’t really think I’ve ever eaten an apricot!” I mean sure, I had had one here and there as a kid but they were never a favorite so I never bought them myself. So, I washed, sliced, and ate one from my grandmas tree and I was shocked! They were delicious and not anything like the ones from grocery stores. They were small, perfectly firm, juicy, and extremely flavorful. I couldn’t wait to use them in recipes!
And I was curious as to what recipes you guys wanted to see that used apricots so I put out a question box on my instagram story and took in some suggestions. Apricot and cream oatmeal, apricot crisp, apricot cake, etc…. but one suggestion caught my eye: “Some sort of cocktail with apricots”. And I immediately set out to do some research.
I wanted to come up with a drink that didn’t require very many ingredients because some drinks/cocktails require multiple liquors as specialty ingredients and to be frank, I don’t want to have to do that! So I did a little bit of research and landed on a whiskey sour. Now if you have never had a whiskey sour before, don’t worry! All it is is whiskey (or bourbon), lemon juice, simple syrup, bitters, and a little bit of egg white. It produces a drink that is smooth, refreshing, and perfect to adapt with new flavors!
This Apricot Whiskey Sour sticks pretty much to the original ingredients except for, of course, the apricots! What I did to infuse that flavor in there was to add some sliced apricots into the simple syrup sugar mixture and let that cook for a while. This creates the perfect Apricot simple syrup that works beautifully in drinks like I am using here. It can also be used to brush on cake layers to keep them moist, as a topping on ice cream, or anything else that would benefit from a little apricot!
The actual steps to make this Apricot Whiskey Sour are easy too: place all the ingredients in a mason jar or cocktail shaker and shake shake shake! Pour it in a glass over ice and that’s it! You will have a delicious and refreshing summer/fall drink in no time.
Now one ingredient that is used in this drink is Peychaud’s Cocktail Bitters. Now you will only use 4-5 drops of the bitters in this recipe but I highly recommend adding them. Bitters are an ultra concentrated liquid extraction of herbs. It will add a little dash of bitterness to the drink and will cut through the harshness of the whiskey or bourbon. You can find bitters at the liquor store as well as in some specialty food or italian shops.
Now there is one thing I want to touch on in regards to this recipe and that is the use of raw egg whites.
Raw Egg Whites Disclaimer:
I know that a lot of people are nervous to consume raw eggs and trust me, I used to be too! However, after doing a lot of research I feel completely safe consuming raw eggs from time to time. According to the US Department of Agriculture, it is safe to consume raw eggs if they are pasteurized. Now of course if you consume raw eggs, you do run the possibility of getting an egg that is contaminated. However, that risk is very low. I make a french silk pie that uses 5 full raw eggs and neither I nor anyone who has eaten said pie has ever gotten sick. Now I will say that it is best to avoid consuming raw eggs is you very young, very old, or are already sick. Other than that, just use your own discretion when consuming raw eggs.
Alternatives For Raw Eggs:
Now, the eggs whites are in the recipe to add a silky smooth texture to the drink. However, if you ABSOLUTELY prefer to not consume raw eggs, you have two options:
Option #1: Skip it. Don’t add the eggs whites and the drink will still taste amazing.
Option #2: Aquafaba. What is aquafaba you might be asking? It is the thick liquid that you can get out of a can of chickpeas or garbanzo beans. Yep, that’s right! Aquafaba has made a huge impact on vegan and plant based cooking/baking because it can whipped like egg whites can. I have tried it before and it is truly amazing. So, if you don’t want to use egg whites for whatever reason, go grab a can of chick peas and sub the egg white in this recipe for 2-3 tablespoons of aquafaba.
I hope you all enjoyed this weeks recipe. I am very excited to share it with you and I hope that you try this recipe and if not, at the very least, I hope it encourages you to try using new flavors and ingredients that you may not have thought about using. Happy baking, cooking, and drinking everyone! ;)
Apricot Whiskey Sour
4 Ounces Bourbon or Whiskey of choice
2 Ounces Apricot Simple Syrup (recipe to follow)
1 ½ Ounces Lemon Juice
2 Egg Whites
4-5 Drops Peychaud’s Aromatic Cocktail Bitters
For the Apricot Simple Syrup
1 Cup Water
1 Cup White Granulated Sugar
1 Pound Apricots, pits removed and cut into quarters
Make the Apricot Simple Syrup
In a medium sized pot, add the water, sugar, and apricots. Turn the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is completely dissolved and the apricots are extremely soft and tender— about 15 minutes. Use a wooden spoon to smash the apricots and cook for another 5 minutes.
Pour the simple syrup through a fine mesh sieve into a mason jar or other air tight container. Refrigerate until completely cool. (This Apricot Simple Syrup can be kept in the fridge for a couple of weeks)
Make the Apricots Whiskey Sours
In a cocktail shaker or large mason jar, add the bourbon/whiskey, apricot simple syrup, lemon juice, and Peychaud’s Bitters. Toss in a blender bottle-style round whisk and put the top of the shaker or jar on. Shake vigorously for an entire minute (don’t skimp here or your egg whites won’t foam up!)
Take off the lid and add in a couple handfuls of ice. Place the lid back on and shake vigorously for another minute.
Place a few ice cubes in two whiskey glasses (or any glasses really!)
Place a small sieve or cocktail strainer over one glass and pour half of the cocktail in. Repeat over another glass.
Serve like that or add a lemon wedge on the rim. Enjoy!