Thursday, June 27, 2013

Mama Caruso’s Mojitos with Basil and Pineapple Juice

Mama Caruso's Mojito with
Basil and Pineapple Juice
  Mama Caruso’s Mojitos with Basil and Pineapple Juice

There is nothing like the smell of fresh basil in my kitchen to get my creative juices flowing and I really wanted to create something special to put in my mason jar for the regular Thursday night #Kitchenparty sponsored by #KitchenParty is a great way to connect with foodies from all over the country right here in my kitchen and on Thursday nights, my kitchen is filled with laughter, conversation about food and…discussion about what everyone is drinking.

My usual report about a stout beer in a mason jar typically gets retweeted, and I do love a nice dark beer, but this week is different; I have basil, lots and lots of basil, so…let’s make a drink that includes this beautiful basil. Opening up the fridge I find the pineapple juice left over from my daughter’s graduation party, and on the counter, a bottle of Flor de Cana Rum that I recently brought back from Nicaragua and my drink is born. It is rare for me to have soda in the house (another leftover from the grad party) but I find a couple of bottles of Sprite, a few limes, a little sugar and I have everything I need to make Mama Caruso’s Mojitos.  I sure hope you enjoy them; it is always fun to create something that you can share with friends and that makes this drink perfect for #KitchenParty! From my table to yours - cheers!

Just sitting here waiting for my friends at
#KitchenParty to join me
8 sweet basil leaves - 6 leaves for the drink and 2 for garnish
1 tablespoon sugar
1 lime - 1/2 cut into 4 wedges and 1/2 cut into slices
2 fluid ounces of pineapple juice
1 1/2 fluid ounces of Flor de Cana rum (or any other rum of your choosing), this can be left out for a perfect virgin mojito
1 cup of ice
1/2 cup of Sprite or any other lemon/lime soda pop/seltzer water
Assembled and ready to go

In a beverage mixer/shaker place one of the lime slices on the bottom of the mixing container
Add the sugar and the basil for the drink on top of the lime slice
All that's left is the mixing and the enjoying!
With a pestle, or muddler, or the end of a rolling pin lightly press on the basil leaves (4-6 presses) so that the oils are released and begin to mix with the lime and sugar
Add the pineapple juice and rum
Shake the mixture
Put the ice in a mason jar or highball glass
Pour the shaken mixture over the ice
Add the soda
Squeeze the lime wedges into the drink to taste
Garnish with the lime slices and remaining basil leaves

Servings: 1 serving
Preparation Time:5 Minutes

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

From My Table to Yours...Continued...

Gallo Pinto
Since returning from my five continent tour earlier this year, I have been busy in the kitchen perfecting the recipes that I acquired from local home cooks, instructors in cooking classes, and developed after eating in local establishments. And, I am very excited about a soon to be launched cooking club which will create opportunities for us to cook together...from my kitchen to yours...stay tuned - it will be super fun!

Although I am energized and ready to roll out Mama Caruso's Cooking Club, I borrowed a little time from Mama Caruso Cooks to complete another project...and I am pleased to announce the launch of my e-book "100 Days of Giving", an inspirational and uplifting exercise in hope and a journey through changing lives through simple gifts. 100 Days of Giving is available from Smashwords and Amazon at the Kindle store and I am really thrilled to be able to share this with my readers. 100 Days of Giving is available for download by clicking on the following links and I would love to get your feedback about the book. Please enjoy!
or through Amazon:

Until the next post, I have included a few photos of what's cooking at Mama Caruso's...a little bit of something from my travels...from my table to yours...Mama Caruso  

Gallo Pinto from Nicaragua

Mediterranean Inspired Antipasti

Mediterranian Inspired Hummus

Getting ready to cook Asian

Awesome roots and tubers

Peanut Soup and Fufu from Ghana

Mediterranian Inspired Antipasti

Cooking in Thailand

Coconut Chicken - Bangkok

Khmer Curry Noodle - Cambodia

These recipes and more comming to Mama Caruso Cooks soon - let me know which recipe you want to cook first in the comment box below!