As you all have learned this year, I am utterly obsessed with Pinterest—the online inspiration board that allows you to create visual wish lists by adding items from a variety of web pages. Of all of the do-it-yourself tip and tricks that I’ve learned and the fashion images that I have used as my muses, I have been most taken with the legions of sangria recipes at my fingertips.
Let me tell you this: I look for ANY excuse to whip up a vat. Friends coming over? Chop up the fruit. Need an alternative to a smooth red for steaks seared on my husband’s grill? Let’s try a red version of the cocktail. You simply can not go wrong with adding it to your menu (or chips and dip).
I tend to view my life in two distinct chunks of time: B.P. (Before Pinterest) and A.P. (After Pinterest). When I made sangria B.P., it consisted of a couple of bottles of Real Sangria plus a handful of whatever ripened fruit was in my refrigerator crisper. Now? A.P.? That was a cop-out! Using the same level of effort, I have discovered that I can step up my sangria game exponentially! Game on, sho’nuff!
It is my pleasure to share a couple of unique recipes, one red and the other white, that lend a few twists than just a bottle of wine and some tired old fruit. The beauty in sangria is also in its presentation. I recommend keeping a nice clear pitcher (glass or acrylic, whichever is in your budget) on hand so that everyone can appreciate the rainbow of ingredients that will whet their whistles.
White Peach Sangria
1 bottle of white wine (whatever is in your budget)
3 ounces brandy
2 ounces triple sec
1 cup orange juice
1 cup pineapple juice
2 ounces simple syrup (boil equal parts water and sugar, then cool)
3 ounces peach puree (I use a canned version usually found in the Mexican foods section of markets)
Mix together all ingredients. Refrigerate at least 6 to 8 hours. Slice peaches and add a couple of slices to each glass, then serve.
1 bottle of red wine
1/2 cup of berry liqueur (I like to use Chambord)
1/2 cup blackberries
1/2 cup raspberries
1/2 cup strawberries
12 ounces of ginger ale
4 ounces of simple syrup (boil equal parts water and sugar, then cool)
Mix together all ingredients. Refrigerate at least 6 to 8 hours. Slice berries, add a couple of slices to each glass, then serve.
I will confess that I still cheat on occasion. I have actually found a really great premade sangria called Savida, which is light and refreshing. If, say, I decide to have girlfriends over at the last minute, I’ll pour it over chopped strawberries, cherries and blackberries. No worries. No judgment.
Do YOU prefer red or white sangria? What cocktails are you sipping this summer?
Shameeka Ayers is an Atlanta-based lifestyle blogger and author who dispenses entertaining, shelter and food & wine anecdotes and advice via her alter ego, The Broke Socialite. She also produces a national tour of curated dessert-tasting experiences, Sugar Coma Events™. Her first novella, Instantly!: How Quickly I Realized I HATE My Job was released this summer.