LCBO Food & Drink Early Summer 2024

Inside Scoop from page 17

SPIRAL CUCUMBER SALAD WITH CILANTRO, PEANUTS & FISH SAUCE DRESSING Cutting mini cukes into trendy spirals allows them to absorb more dressing and catch bits of peanut, chili and cilantro in their accordion-like folds. The sweet, sour and savoury dressing is inspired by the Vietnam ese dipping sauce nuoc cham . Salting the cukes beforehand is an important step; it draws out some of the water in the cukes, so the dressing isn’t diluted.

CAMPARI SPRITZ While the Aperol Spritz gets all the headlines, many discerning drinkers prefer its swagger ing cousin made with Campari. It’s still fizzy and refreshing, but the bolder aperitivo gives it more punch. The classic 3:2:1 formula lends itself well to many tasty variations, some of which we’ve provided below.

3 oz Prosecco, chilled 2 oz Campari 1 oz soda water, chilled 3 small pimento olives on a cocktail pin

DRESSING 1 small garlic clove, grated on rasp 2 tbsp (30 mL) granulated sugar 1 tbsp (15 mL) sriracha sauce 2 tbsp (30 mL) fresh lime juice


There seem to be endless ways to put a new twist on the classic Negroni. This tasty variation is slightly more assertive than the original, and you can use either blanco or reposado. It’s also delicious with dry vermouth in place of sweet. 1 oz blanco or reposado tequila 1 oz Campari 1 oz sweet red vermouth Grapefruit twist 1. Add ice, tequila, Campari and sweet ver mouth to a mixing glass. Stir for 30 seconds. Strain into a chilled rocks glass over 3 or 4 ice cubes, or a king cube. Squeeze grapefruit twist over drink and place in glass. Makes 1 cocktail ABSINTHE & ROOT BEER This unlikely marriage of absinthe and root beer is credited to Ellie Winters, who came up with the idea in 2007, when she was working at St. George Spirits in Alameda, Calif. Our version of the bartender’s secret uses crushed ice and more root beer to soften the potency of absinthe. It’s a truly revelatory drink. Crushed ice 1 oz absinthe, preferably Lucid 2 3/4 oz root beer, preferably Barq’s, chilled Orange wheel and rosemary sprig to garnish Short metal or compostable straw for serving 1. Fill a chilled 12-oz rocks glass halfway with crushed ice. Pour in absinthe. Stir until it turns milky white, about 15 seconds. Fill glass with ice. Slowly pour in root beer. Garnish with orange and rosemary. Serve with straw and give instructions to stir drink before consuming. Makes 1 drink

1. Fill a chilled stemless red wineglass three quarters full with ice. Slowly pour in Prosecco, Campari and soda water. Lightly stir. Garnish with olives.

2 tbsp (30 mL) rice vinegar 3 tbsp (45 mL) fish sauce 3 tbsp (45 mL) vegetable oil

Makes 1 drink

SALAD 2 pkgs (397 g each) mini cucumbers, about 10 in total Salt to taste 1 fresh red finger chili, thinly sliced 1 green onion, thinly sliced 3 tbsp (45 mL) chopped cilantro 1/3 cup (80 mL) chopped dry-roasted peanuts


Substitute cava for Prosecco, fino sherry for Campari, and sparkling lemonade for soda water. Stir in 1/2 oz Simple Syrup (recipe follows). Garnish with a long, thin lemon twist instead of olives. Rosé Spritz Substitute rosé crémant for Prosecco, Lillet Blanc for Campari, and pink grapefruit soda for soda water. Add 1/2 tsp (2 mL) Simple Syrup (recipe follows) and 1 dash Peychaud’s bitters. Garnish with a Ruby Red grapefruit wedge instead of olives. Lambro Spritz Substitute off-dry Lambrusco for Prosecco, crème de cassis for Campari, and berry flavoured soda water (such as Bubly Raspberry) for plain soda water. Stir in 2 tsp (10 mL) fresh lemon juice. Garnish with a strawberry half instead of olives. SIMPLE SYRUP Bring 1 cup (250 mL) water to a boil and stir in 1 cup (250 mL) sugar until dissolved. Pour into jar and let cool. If storing, cover and refriger ate for up to 1 month. Makes 1 1/2 cups (375 mL)

1. For the dressing, whisk ingredients in a bowl until sugar is dissolved. Transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate up to 3 days. 2. For the salad, lay a cucumber between two chopsticks. Make crosswise slices down into the cucumber at 1/8-inch (3-mm) intervals—the chopsticks will stop the knife from going through. Rotate cucumber 180 degrees. Slice down on a 45-degree angle at 1/8-inch (3-mm) intervals. Repeat with each cucumber. Place in a large bowl and season generously with salt, gently mixing to combine. (It’s okay if some spirals break.) Let stand 20 to 30 minutes. 3. Rinse cucumbers in several changes of cold water. Drain, pat dry with paper towel and transfer to a shallow serving dish. Sprinkle with chili and green onion. Shake dressing, pour over cucumbers and gently toss to coat. Sprinkle with cilantro and peanuts. Serve immediately.

Serves 6


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