Drinking the Harvest
Drink the Harvest is the newest cookbook from DeNeice Guest and Nan Chase, who see their gardens as the sources of any number of fresh beverages, from rhubarb juice to the versatile blueberry basil syrup featured below. The book also covers pear cider, mead, kombucha, and several fresh juices and teas for all seasons.
Guest and Chase aren't the only ones sipping the bounty of the garden this summer. Local bartenders are mixing up local flavors as well, like the fresh gin and sodas we recently sampled at Top of the Monk cocktail bar, which were sweetened with strawberry basil and vanilla bean raspberry syrups.
Blueberry Basil Syrup
Use this unusual syrup for almost anything at all; it has a sophisticated and unexpected flavor that preserves the complexity of basil with the heavy fruitiness of blueberry. Raw cane sugar, rather than white sugar, imparts even more flavor notes, creating a dark, velvety liquid.
Makes 1 pint.
Prep time: 10 minutes, if using prepared fruit juice
- 2 c. blueberry juice
- 2 c. raw cane sugar
- 1 c. fresh basil leaves
- 1/8 tsp. ascorbic acid (omit if prepared juice already has ascorbic acid added)