July is here and let’s hope it finally means the start of summer! Warm summer evenings are perfect for drinks parties when the emphasis is more on conversation than food. Here are two lovely fruity drinks that are bound to get the conversation flowing!
Strawberry Summer Cup
This summer cup is really lovely but, beware when sampling it – I’ve known people to drink very large quantities of this because it is so delicious!
You will need:
- 300 ml (1/2 pint) Grand Marnier liqueur
- 300 ml (1/2 pint) Kirsch liqueur
- 4-5 litres (7-8 pints) medium-dry white wine
- 2kg (41/2lb) ripe strawberries
- 6 oranges
Slice the oranges and strawberries, then place in a large bowl and pour over the Grand Marnier and the Kirsch liqueurs. If possible, place in a refrigerator and leave to soak for one hour, but not much longer or the fruit will be past its best. Then pour over the wine and stir the mixture well.
Spiced Fruit Cooler
This recipe is a very good reason for giving alcohol a miss – it’s much nicer than some wines I’ve drunk in the past! It’s also so delicious the poor old car drivers in the party won’t feel they are missing out either.
You will need:
- 1.8 litres (3 pints) sparkling mineral water
- 1.8 litres (3 pints) fresh orange juice
- 900ml (1 1/2 pints) fresh grapefruit juice
- 900ml (11/2 pints) fresh lemon juice
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 10 cloves
- 175g (6oz) sugar
- 450ml (3/4 pint) water
- 275g (10oz) runny honey
- 1 orange for decoration
- 1 lemon for decoration
- ice cubes for decoration
Thoroughly chill all the fruit juices and the mineral water. Mix the 450ml (3/4 pint) of water, cinnamon sticks, cloves and sugar in a pan and bring to the boil. Stir gently until all the sugar has dissolved. Simmer for about 5 minutes, then add the honey, stirring until it has dissolved. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
Once the mixture has cooled, strain it into a large punch bowl (preferably the most attractive one you can find), and add the fresh juices and the sparkling mineral water. Stir gently. Decorate with slices of orange and lemon and ice cubes.