Friday, October 2, 2009

Satsuma Cocktail

Folks around the country may not be aware of the availability of terrific local citrus here in Louisiana. Though they have taken a beating in the past few years, orange groves abound in south Louisiana, especially Plaquemines Parish, which creeps south of New Orleans along the Mississippi toward the Gulf of Mexico. In addition to oranges, we have satsumas, which are like sweet, mostly seedless mandarin oranges or clementines.

At our house on Jackson Avenue, and our old place on Kerlerec Street in Treme, we have had satsuma trees. After a couple of lean years, it looks like we are going to have a bumper crop this year. The fruit is not quite ripe yet but some have fallen from the tree regardless. Lest they just rot on the ground unloved, I instead have been squeezing them (as well as some other early satsumas that I have been getting in my box at the Hollygrove Farmer's Market), adding some gin, simple syrup, and sweet vermouth, shaking vigorously with ice, and serving them up on the rocks in a high ball glass. The drink is pretty close to the Bronx cocktail, which some of you may (or may not) remember from my thirtieth birthday party a couple of years ago.

I got the idea from a recipe in New York Magazine for something they called Franny's Satsuma Cocktail, and which used Carpano Antica Formula, instead of the cheap sweet vermouth that I had on hand. My low brow variation, using Hollygrove and Irish Channel satsumas, needs a better name. Maybe Lil' Wayne's Juice and Gin (Lil' Wayne is a Hollygrove native)? Or the St. Thomas' Fallen Fruit? (My house backs up on what used to be the old St. Thomas Projects, which I wrote about for The Nation.)

Here is the recipe:

2 ounces Beefeater gin
1/2 ounce sweet vermouth
1 1/2 ounces fresh satsuma juice
1/2 ounce of simple syrup

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with lots of ice. Shake until it so cold it burns your hands. Pour into a tall glass with ice. Enjoy.

No comments:

Post a Comment