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Posts filed under 'Drink'

never end

Northern MN + Dark & Stormies

One of the worst parts about growing up is the end of Summer Vacation.  Summer as an adult is, of course, still wonderful, but the very best parts—the parts with grill smoke and popsicles and fire flies and toes dipped in cold water—get pressed into the margins of day-to-day life.  So the Summer Vacation feeling makes only fleeting appearances, during an after-work stroll, say, or a too-brief weekend afternoon spent lakeside.

Northern MN + Dark & Stormies
Northern MN + Dark & Stormies

And that makes it impossible to believe in the Summer Vacation myth that I fell for year after year as a kid: that it’ll never end.  That the days will continue to unspool like one Saturday after another for as long as you can imagine.  I’d give almost anything to subscribe to that innocent fantasy again.

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe,Vacation on July 10 2013 » 10 comments

in that kitchen

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As it turns out, moving is some difficult business. After five years in our old place, we moved about a month ago, in a weekend that re-defined exhaustion. We’d spent the prior weeks slowly packing up our place—each glass, every book, all those pairs of shoes—into boxes. We hired men to actually move those boxes (I was 7-months pregnant, after all), but the real work began when we arrived at our new place. We’ve been unpacking and settling in since we arrived—going on four weeks now. With the help of Kevin’s parents and my parents (and those burly movers), most of the work was behind us after the first two weekends. Since then, we’ve been filling in the gaps here and there.

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In my real estate history, five years is a long time. Aside from childhood homes, I’ve never lived anywhere nearly that long. So, I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised by the big, hot tears on my cheeks when, over this past weekend, Kevin and I picked up a few final things from our old place, left our keys on the kitchen counter and said goodbye. In my rush to sell that place (Not enough room for the baby! Too many stairs!), I seemed to have forgotten how much I had loved it, and how much life—and what a good one—we had lived there.

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on June 25 2012 » 14 comments

something very new

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When we moved back to Chicago from DC in 2005, one of the biggest draws of this town was that it was where many of our friends were living.  Kevin had grown up here, we’d both gone to college here, and it wasn’t so far from Minneapolis, where I’d grown up.  Unlike Washington, where everything was new and where we were wrapped up in anonymity much of the time, this was a place where you could run into someone you knew at a Cubs game, where you could go to a place that you’d been five (or, in Kevin’s case, ten or fifteen) years ago.

emily's baby shower

There were a lot of great things about being back in Chicago—but returning to a tight group of college friends was certainly one of the best.  There were BBQs and nights of unending Taboo and weddings and chili cook-offs and fantasy football drafts and Fourth of July fireworks and book clubs and girls dinners and street festivals and concerts.

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on May 11 2011 » 11 comments

Not Your Grandma’s Brandy Drink (Or Is It?)

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As usual, I’ve gotten a little ahead of myself. I have a history of this: in the fifth grade, I was already dressing like a business woman. Blazers, and sometimes ties (it was 1989), were de rigueur. So, really, my eagerness to talk about New Years Day, before uttering even a peep about New Years Eve, really isn’t all that shocking. Like I said, I have a history—a shoulder-padded history.

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In reality, I have been doing a lot of thinking about New Years Eve. We’ll be cooking and laying low because we have an early flight on New Years Day (New Orleans!). My initial idea for a New Years Eve menu came while we were at my parents’ house in Minnesota for Christmas.

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Dessert,Drink,Recipe on December 30 2008 » 17 comments

Sip of the South

I am back in Chicago after four days in the South, touring a small slice of Dixie (two nights in Nashville and one in Greenwood, Mississippi). As I said last week, I was with my friend Maggie, who grew up in Nashville and whose childhood best friend lives in Greenwood. Today’s recipe—peach sweet tea—is in honor of the trip, because I’m not quite ready to quit savoring my taste of the South just yet.


Like this tea, my hopes for the trip conjured visions of hot thick air; sprawling verandas, spilling over with greenery and dotted with porch swings; and out-of-the-ordinary (for me) tastes. Happily, neither the trip nor the tea disappointed. Our two days in Nashville were jam-packed with tour guides (led, expertly, by Maggie) and with as many glimpses of the Olympics coverage as possible. We saw downtown Nashville, along with its rows of bars [above, top row, left] that boast both stories of legends discovered on their stages as well as nightly line-dancing. We spent an hour or so roaming the Country Music Hall of Fame [above, middle row, left and right], reading about and listening to Hank Williams Sr. and Jr., Johnny Cash, Pasty Cline, Dolly Parton and others. We also saw the Parthenon (um, yes, Nashville is home to an impressive recreation of the Parthenon, because Nashville, as I learned, is the “Athens of the South,” and also because, well, why not) [above, bottom row, left] and the Cumberland River (a river, incidentally, that is meaningful to me because on its banks is where Kevin and I first made eyes at each other during a camping trip in Kentucky) [above, bottom row, right].

(Click “more” for the rest of the story, more photos & the recipe.)

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on August 18 2008 » 3 comments

A Summer Kind of Sunday

During the cooler months, Sunday nights usually mean one thing: soup. A big, steaming, bubbling pot of it, ready to be ladled into deep bowls and enjoyed along with our HBO show du jour. Leftovers are promptly divided into Ziploc containers, ready to be microwaved into hearty lunches in an office kitchen on Michigan Avenue (Kevin) and a bank of industrial-strength microwaves in a law school cafeteria across town (me). But this Sunday was 90 degrees, at its coolest. So, soup? It wasn’t happening.

So instead of mirepoix and chicken stock, this Sunday, we opted for limes and tequila. Out with the stock pot and medium-high heat and in with the blender and ice. Lots of ice.

(Click “more” for the rest of the story, more photos & the recipe.)

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on June 09 2008 » 5 comments

Cure For What Ails You

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My relationship with grapefruit has been a bit contentious lately. Sure, it’s there for me day in and day out when I supreme it into ruby red wedges that perk up my morning yogurt. But it utterly failed me when I dusted off our ice cream maker on one of the shortest days of the year in hopes of a bright-as-the-summer-solstice sorbet. I quickly rectified the sorbet debacle with a foofy brunch salad that involved champagne vinegar, fennel and, of course, grapefruit. And it was fine and all. But, little did I know, all along, all I really had to do was add booze.

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Yes, these grapefruit margaritas—perfectly tart, tangy and tequila-y—were just the showcase for the most on-again/off-again citrus fruit of my winter. And they transformed what might have been a quiet February Friday night in into a fiesta. Good thing, because our Saturday night concert plans—tickets to which involved much Craigslist finagling and transportation to which involved a CTA bus ride across town—were canceled “due to illness,” according to a flier taped to the venue’s front door. Perhaps the band wasn’t getting its daily intake of Vitamin C. Might I suggest that these grapefruit cocktails would be just the remedy?

(Click “more” for the rest of the story, more photos & the recipe.)

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on February 24 2008 » 3 comments

Christmas Morning Mimosas

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Mimosas are not an every morning kind of thing (unfortunately). And more than that, these mimosas are not an every mimosa-morning kind of thing. These mimosas are sort of like the Cadillac of all mimosas.

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After a joyful night of feasting, gifts and carols, we all woke up this morning excited to sift through our gifts—reading instruction manuals, trying things on and packing gifts up for the trip home. All this had us very hungry, of course. Good thing my mom had an incredible brunch in store.

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We dined on a great frittata (loaded with spicy greens and ricotta), freshly-baked cinnamon rolls, smoky breakfast sausages fresh from a local source, and a gorgeous plate of fresh fruit. All this had us very thirsty, of course. Good thing my mom had some wonderful mimosas in store.

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And, like I said, not just any mimosas. With Grand Marnier, a festive sugared rim and a lining of pomegranate seeds, these mimosas were definitely holiday-worthy. We sipped on them while we were opening gifts from our stockings. And during the intense game of Taboo that ensued. And during the card games that came next. Obviously, it’s time for a Christmas Day nap.

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on December 25 2007 » 10 comments

Pomegranate Sangria

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Oh, Sangria, why do you do it to me?  As I mentioned yesterday, we had a cocktail party last night and the featured cocktail was Bobby Flay’s pomegranate sangria.  Because I liked it very (read: too) much, this post will be limited to the sangria alone.  I promise to write about the food very soon.  I’m especially excited to tell you about the mini meatballs, shrimp-and-chorizo skewers and carrot cake.  Stay tuned. 

Back to the sangria.  I made it last year for our holiday party and it was very well received.  Let’s just say that there was an incident involving my friend and me, two forks and the booze-soaked fruit at the bottom of the pitcher in the wee hours, as the party was winding down.

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Last time I made this, I omitted the pomegranate seeds.  For some reason, it was an intimidating fruit to me.  I love the juice, I’ve enjoyed the seeds in restaurant dishes, and we’ve all heard more than enough about the nutritional benefits of the fruit.  But something about dismembering the fruit for it’s seeds seemed a little too carnal.  I mean, just look at that photo.  I think carnal is an appropriate word.  This year, as evidenced by the pictures, I went for it.  And I have to say, it’s really fun to fish out those seeds (and to pop a couple in your mouth here and there). pom-sangria-3.jpg

Thanks in part to the addition of the pretty, pretty little seeds, the sangria was a hit again this year.  In fact, I had to whip up a second batch midway through the party (why, why did I do that?).   As I carried the pitcher out of the kitchen on my way to the bar, many a guests held out their empty glasses for a refill.  The pitcher was mainly fruit by the time I made it the bar.

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And I’m proud to say there were no digging-the-boozy-fruit-out-of-the-bottom-of-the-pitcher incidents this time around.  Though those pomegranate seeds might have been worth it …

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Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Drink,Recipe on December 02 2007 » 6 comments