My best friend in the whole world is called Jackie and she is a bit fiendish. She can be rather scary if you don’t understand the intricacies of her personality and she can bloody terrifying even when you do. Saying that, she is the most loyal, most kind, most supportive and most brave person I know and she’s also a bloody hoot!
Why am I telling you all of this?
Well, Jackie doesn’t drink alcohol. She has drunk alcohol in the past, there are some fond memories of embracing various public bins in Oxford when we were teenagers but she soon realised that drinking wasn’t for her and since then it’s been tea and squash all the way which must mean she has the healthiest liver in the entire of Oxfordshire but also none of those horrendous embarrassing memories that crop up after a night out. She’s a lucky girl. Despite my many postings on fruit flavoured boozes, I also drink far less these days. Partly because I stopped drinking completely for a while and it’s rather dropped off my radar but also a year without alcohol left me as rather a lightweight and I’m prone to wobbling over after a small sherry. (Oh I do love a small sherry!)
With this in mind, and with a friend coming over for a midweek supper, I took to my development kitchen, that’s the small corner by the sink, where the herbs and the cheese grater lives, and I decided to flippantly create an exciting drink to go with our supper. I originally toyed with adding food colouring to water, whacking in a cocktail umbrella and calling it something fancy like ‘Moonlight Flit Over Fazakerley’ but then I saw that I had a brimming bag of blood oranges – which I would like to tell you are my new favourite fruit, like ever – and I thought ‘hang on a cotton picking second’ and so the mocktail was born.
Blood oranges are also in season which is good because we like things that are in season..
And I have named it ‘Jackie The Fiend’ after my dearest friend who no longer, and the world cries with relief, drinks and who deserves a mocktail named after her because she’s fabulous. Fiend because the colour of the blood oranges is slightly reminiscent of a vampire film. It’s not complex but I like it.
You could, of course, add vodka or gin to it but then it wouldn’t be a mocktail and that would defeat the point. It’s a bit like a tequila sunrise but 100 times nicer because tequila is the liquid equivalent of Satan and also because it tastes a million times fresher.
Jackie The Fiend
makes about 2 litres but you can keep topping up the lemonade for several more jugs without much dilution
- 4 blood oranges
- a lemon + a couple of slices for garnishing
- handful of mint leaves
- crushed ice
- a bottle of lemonade (normally I buy sugar free but I think the full fat version suits this)
- Tip a huge amount of the crushed ice into a large jug. Don’t worry about it melting, you want the chilliness and the more ice cubes in a drink, the less likely it is that the ice will melt because it’s kept at a colder temperature. (a little known tip from my days of bartending when people would bemoan too much ice for diluting their drinks..)
- Using a lemon squeezer, squeeze the blood oranges, they don’t contain many pips so try and save some of the flesh. Pour this and the flesh into the jug. Squeeze the juice from the lemon and add to the jug.
- Poke in the mint leaves and the lemon slices and top up with the lemonade.
- Serve on more ice.
It was also a great excuse to use my gorgeous bottle from Prince Charles’ Highgrove shop that my gorgeous mother bought me for my birthday last year.