A potion for Valentine’s Day… For those stung by cupid, and to those rebuffed. To those in love, in lust, indifferent. To the poets and masochists and loners and users. To the hopeless romantics, the fools, the obsessives, and the cold-hearted…
Blue and orange flame love.
Searing love. Scorching love.
Hungry, gnawing, constantly craving love.
Chocolate, marshmallows, melting, luxuriously dripping.
Saccharine love. Love that bites and chews and sucks and savors and gulps. Satiating, quenching, filling.
Hot berry pie love, caramel cake love, velvety icing love.
Filled, layered, frosted, can’t wait to devour. Ice cream and cherry-on-top love.
Whipped cream. Gluttonous, greedy, can’t get enough love.
Bonbons, macarons, Marie Antoinette confections and pink champagne, bubbly love.
Sticky amber honey, lavender, agua de azahares, fragrant love.
Paper-cut and lemon juice love. Under the skin, cut-to-the-quick, stinging.
Hiccupping love. Heartburn love. Nauseating love.
Drunken, aching, choking.
Chamomile tea, tiny cube of sugar, soothing love. Warm, still, pool of gold; gentle lullaby and dreamless sleep love.
Root cellar love, dark, dank, buried. Forgotten icebox drawer, stale bread, molding cheese.
Blushing apple, falling, rotting, worming. Burnt toast, fallen soufflé, curdled custard love.
Extinguished love, white ashen coals, wisp of smoke.
Bony, famished, gum-in-hair love.
End of the feast love.
RED RED RED … an original recipe from Winter Cocktails
A sparkling drink made blush with a tart beet granita.
8 ounces cooked beets (see Ingredient Tip)
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups water
3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
6 star anise pods
2 teaspoons whole allspice berries
1 (750-milliliter) bottle prosecco, chilled
– Pulse beets until completely pureed in food processor. Set aside.
– Combine sugar, water, vinegar, star anise, and allspice berries in medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar is completely dissolved, about 5 minutes. Stir in beets. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
– Strain mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into 13- by 9-inch baking pan and discard solids. Place pan in freezer. After 20 minutes, scrape with fork. Repeat scraping procedure until mixture is fully frozen and has a slushy-like consistency.
– To serve, spoon 3 to 4 tablespoons granita into champagne flutes and top off with prosecco. Serve.
INGREDIENT TIP Beet Red: Use homemade roasted beets or store-bought vacuum-sealed beets. Avoid canned beets, as they are too soft and water-logged.