One of our favorite things about spring is the reopening of the Omaha Farmer’s Market and the return of all sorts of good produce to our kitchen! We love heading down to the market and checking out the crisp greens, young radishes, rhubarb and fresh herbs that the various stands offer. We had loaded up on fresh greens for making salads and were heading home when we noticed one stand selling fresh spring snap peas. Our boys love snap peas (every time we have tried to grow them in our garden, we never seem to have any that make it to our table as they get eaten as fast as they grow!) so we had to grab some to take home with us.
Having fresh spring snap peas in the house inspired us to experiment with a flavor combination we have wanted to play with for a long time, snap pea and gin! How cool to get your serving of vegetables and booze in one easy drink? We are always looking for good cocktails to drink on the deck by our pool, and since snap peas are so wonderfully spring and summery, we wanted to come up with a cocktail or two that would feature the springy green flavor of the snap pea!
Snap peas are one of those vegetables that a lot of people only think about using in a stir fry or fresh salad, and to be honest, that is what we usually think too, but the snap pea can also be wonderfully sweet and green, making them quite the treat. That sweet green makes the snap pea a great ingredient to mix into cocktails as herb flavors are favorites for the complexity they can bring to a drink. We used the snap peas to make a snap pea simple syrup, which pulls out the sweet of the pea while also enhancing the herbaceous quality of the snap pea.
To keep the freshness of the snap peas in the syrup, we chopped the peas and then just brought the syrup and peas up to a boil then pulled it off the heat and allowed it to steep until cool. This technique allowed the syrup to capture the fresh sweet green flavor of the snap pea, with out getting the bitterness that can occur when a snap pea is over cooked. Plus the syrup ends up clear, which makes this syrup kind of sneaky, full of green freshness, but with out the green color!
Since we wanted a light springy drink and wanted to bring out a little more of that herbaceous flavor, so we went with the spirit that hits both of those qualities, gin.Gin is one of our favorite summer spirits, crisp and full of botanicals and bright citrus that can be light and refreshing on warm days. We have been really into mixing different flavors into the classic gin and tonic this spring, making a Strawberry Limeade Gin and Tonic or a Mountain Pine Gin and Tonic, so it seemed like a natural direction to start out with for our snap pea syrup.
We liked the way the tonic pulled out the green notes of the snap pea while adding a cool effervescence to the drink. A thin slice of cucumber further enhances the green garden feel of the cocktail, complimenting the sweetness of the snap pea and the bright citrus of the gin. The Snap Pea Gin and Tonic feels like sipping spring in a glass! Cheers!
- 2 oz Gin
- 1 oz Snap Pea Syrup
- 4 oz Tonic
- 1 thin slice of cucumber
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup snap peas, chopped.
- Add in gin, snap pea syrup and ice to the glass.
- Top with tonic.
- Garnish with the cucumber and a snap pea.
- Chop the peas into pieces.
- Add sugar and water to a pot.
- Add chopped peas.
- Bring water to a boil.
- Allow to boil for a minute, remove from heat.
- Allow peas to steep for 30 minutes.
- Strain and discard the peas, retaining the syrup.
Follow my blog with Bloglovin