It’s Friday! That means it’s time to unwind and enjoy some time with friends. These recipes are simple, don’t require any obscure products, and can be prepped ahead. Paired with a roaring fire in the fireplace, these recipes will make a great spread for an easy cocktail hour gathering.
- 2 teaspoons finely grated peeled fresh ginger
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 bottle (750 ml) dry sparkling wine, such as Cava, Prosecco, or Champagne
Set a fine-mesh sieve over a small bowl; set aside. In a small saucepan, boil ginger, sugar, and 1/4 cup water until syrupy, about 2 minutes. Pour through sieve into bowl, discarding solids. (To store syrup, refrigerate in an airtight container, up to 1 week.)
Pour 1 tablespoon syrup into each of 8 tall glasses. Top with sparkling wine, and gently stir.
Pear and Sparkling Cider Cocktail
- 2 cups pear nectar, chilled
- 2 cups sparkling apple cider, chilled
- 2 cups seltzer, chilled
- 4 ounces (1/2 cup) bourbon whiskey, such as Knob Creek
- 1 Bosc pear, unpeeled, cored, and cut lengthwise into 8 wedges
Stir together pear nectar, cider, seltzer, and whiskey in a pitcher. Divide pear wedges among glasses, and pour in cocktail. Can be prepared 1-2 hours in advance.
Warm Spiced Nuts
- 1 large egg white
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 3/4 teaspoons cayenne pepper
- 2 1/2 cups pecan halves, or assorted nuts, such as cashews, walnuts, or almonds
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Beat egg white until soft and foamy. Combine all remaining ingredients except pecans; whisk into egg white. Stir in pecans until well coated; spread mixture in single layer onto an ungreased baking pan.
Bake pecans for 15 minutes, then remove from oven. Using a metal spatula, toss, stir, and separate nuts. Reduce oven to 250 degrees and return nuts to bake until medium brown, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven; toss, and stir again. Place baking pan on wire rack to cool (they will crisp as they cool). Break up any that stick together. Serve warm.
via martha stewart