Thursday, December 24, 2009

Turkish Delight

This week's drink,"The Turkish Delight," shares its title with the candy of the same name. The candy version is a sweet, soft, pink, jelly candy, usually cut into small squares and most often arrives in a soft tissue-lined candy box sprinkled with superfine sugar.

Turkish Delight, (the candy,) dates back to 15th century Turkey, where it was known as Lokum, (Arabic for 'morsel' or 'mouthful.') It was introduced into England in the mid 19th century under the name Turkish Delight. It was supposedly a favorite of Lawrence of Arabia.

Turkish Delight is featured in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis and has seen a recent surge in popularity in Europe since the release of the film version: "The Chronicles of Narnia ."

The Recipe:

Into a cocktail shaker filled with ice:

- Add a 3 count of Svedka Vanilla Vodka,

- Add a 2 count of White Creme de Cacao,

- Add a dash of "rosewater,"

- Add two tablespoons of honey,

- Add 1 shot of chilled water,

- Add two drops of Grenadine,

- Shake festively.

- Strain into a Brandy Snifter,

- Garnish with a cherry and a slice of lemon.

Original recipe by Joe the Bartender, Passage to India Restaurant, Salem, MA

Bartender's Notes: I have included this cocktail in the 'Greatest Drink in the World' for two reasons: Firstly, because it tastes exactly like Turkish Delight. And secondly, because no Christmas in England would be complete without a box of Turkish Delight. In modern England, it may appear peripheral, but it is still present.

Turkish Delight is not to everybody’s taste, it is rather an acquired taste, in fact, I recently found it on a list of 100 things to eat before you die. But if you follow the recipe exactly and give it to your English friends, they will be amazed. Try serving it with a bowl of unshelled roasted pistachio nuts with a squeeze of fresh lemon.

Chris's notes: While fellow patron, Johanna, likened the flavor of this drink to the popular Scottish beverage, "IRN BRU," I found the taste of this drink to be just like drinking a glass of candy. I can only assume the candy in question is the Turkish Delight that the drink is named after, as I am unfamiliar with this particular confection, (as I likewise am with IRN BRU,) but this was quite yummy and I believe its namesake was what the White Witch from Narnia used to seduce that kid into betraying his siblings. That there's some formidable stuff!

Happy Christmas!

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