All hail the unsung hero of fall, the cranberry. Pumpkin may be everywhere and in everything during this season, but cranberries — often under-appreciated and under-utilized — have more to offer than simply becoming a sauce.
Don’t worry, cranberries, I got you covered, because today I'm going to show you how to turn those lovely ripe berries into a fresh, boozy infusion that's the perfect accompaniment to your Thanksgiving appetizers.
I am a huge fan of the infusion for a few reasons, but mostly as a way to celebrate seasonal produce. With a booze infusion you can always take what is in season and turn it into something unique and delicious to share with friends.
The DIY Booze Infusion
Another advantage of homemade infusions is the lack of preservatives and other chemicals you get to avoid. Your homemade version won’t last as long as those store bought types, but they are much better for you and the planet. Much like the Stasher bags we’re making them in.
Infusions are merely a function of time and quantity but ain't nobody got time to wait so we're going to cheat. We are going to sous vide our infusions, shaving days off the infuse time. This is great for a few reasons: first, you can infuse the exact amount you would want and have it ready in a few hours. Second, this is very scalable. You can make a cocktail for you or as many people as you want.
You can also do everything in your Stasher bag: infuse the booze, mix your cocktail and if it’s a party of one, you can drink right out of the bag with a straw. Think of it as an adult CapriSun without the nasty and toxic mylar.
Stasher bags are super planet-friendly and people friendly. Think about how many bags you have thrown away in your lifetime; a lot huh? Even if you use them conservatively, that trash builds up.
So what better than a cocktail that is planet-friendly? That good feeling you have is more than just vodka. It takes 500 years for a single back to breakdown. Yikes.
Okay, let’s make this delicious cocktail.
Cranberry Infused Vodka Cosmopolitan
For the vodka Infusion
- 1 1/2 cup fresh cranberries (dried works too, use half)
- 1 small orange, sliced
- 1/2 of a lime slice
- 1 lemon slice
- 3 cups vodka
For the Cosmo:
- 1/2 cup infused vodka
- 1/4 cup triple sec
- 1/4 cup cranberry juice
- 1 lime wedge, more for garnish
- Combine all ingredients for the infusion in a Half Gallon or Stand-Up Stasher bag. Remove excess air. Place bag in a large pot and weigh it down.
- Attach sous vide device. Cover bag with water paying special attention to the instructions for your device. A sous vide is far from required. If you do not own one, you simply need a cooking thermometer to maintain water temperature, and just do it on the stove.
- Sous vide the infusion between 125-150 degrees F for at least three hours.
- Turn off the device, remove the bag, and discard the water. Strain the Stasher bag contents, reserving the infused vodka.
- Using a smaller bag to mix, combine infused vodka, triple sec, cranberry juice, and a lime wedge. If you are using a traditional martini glass, fill it with ice. Shake the cocktail vigorously for 10 seconds. Dump the ice and pour it into your glass.
- Garnish with lime wedges.