Are you saying no to booze for FebFast?
Mocktail maestro Fern Green (right) has some tasty options for you.
Fern’s Mocktail Manual (Hardie Grant, $24.99) is full of recipes that are equal parts healthy and naughty, from super-booster green smoothies to full-fat toasted marshmallow milkshakes.
But her best recipes are the clever mocktails, and here are Fern’s top five…
1. Pink grapefruit & basil Mojito
This refreshing summer cocktail has delicious sour notes. Freshly juiced pink grapefruit gives off a lovely aroma. Served in an elegant tumbler, this is a very pretty drink. This recipe creates one mocktail.
Caster (superfine) sugar
7 basil leaves
2 tbs Demerara sugar
150ml freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice
Basil ice cubes (a great way to preserve fresh basil… crush the leaves and freeze them in water)
Tumbler, small plate and muddler.
Sprinkle a little caster sugar on to a plate. Run the lime around the rim of the glass and dip in the sugar. Put the basil leaves into the glass with the Demerara sugar and muddle. Add the grapefruit juice and ice cubes, and top up with soda water.
2. Peach iced tea
Very popular in Europe, peach iced tea is usually sold in a bottle or can and pumped with sugar, but this version has only a fraction of the sugar and tastes amazingly fresh – perfect for a summer’s day. This recipe serves four.
1.5 litres (3 pints 3 oz) water
5 white tea bags
4 tbs brown sugar
2 peaches, pitted and diced
Ice cubes, to serve
Saucepan, 2 mixing bowls, jug, sieve, wooden spoon and teacup.
Boil the water, remove from the heat and add the tea bags and 3 tbs sugar. Steep for 5 mins. Pour the tea minus the bags into a large bowl and cool for 45 mins. Add the remaining sugar to the peaches and let it sit for 5 mins to soften before adding to the jug (no straining). Pour over the cooled tea, stir and chill. Serve with ice cubes.
3. Pineapple & Coconut Smoothie
With the sweetness of fresh pineapple and the creaminess of coconut, you can’t go wrong with this tropical island-style smoothie. This recipe serves two.
1/2 ripe pineapple, skin removed and chopped, plus extra to serve
1 banana, peeled
300ml vanilla yoghurt
300ml coconut milk
4 ice cubes, to serve
Blender, 2 tall glasses
Put all the ingredients except the ice cubes together in a blender and whizz until smooth. Slice 2 triangles of pineapple and make a cut halfway through each piece so they can perch at the top of each glass. Add ice to the tall glasses, pour over the smoothie, garnish with a piece of pineapple and serve with straws.
4. Melon Ball Punch
Summertime has arrived with this mocktail, with tart lime and colourful melon balls. This recipe makes about 1.2 litres.
700ml verjuice or white grape juice
1/2 each of small watermelon, cantaloupe melon and honeydew melon
10 mint leaves
3 limes, sliced
Large punch bowl, melon baller, baking tray lined with baking parchment, wooden spoon and large tumblers.
Pour the verjuice and lemonade into a bowl and chill. Scoop out the flesh from the melons and place on a lined tray that can fit in the freezer. Freeze for 2 hours. Add handfuls of frozen melon balls to the bowl with the mint and two-thirds of the lime slices and stir; return the reserved melon balls to the freezer. Refrigerate the punch for 30 minutes. Pop frozen melon balls into each glass, pour over the punch and serve with the remaining lime slices.
5. Virgin Mary
This traditional non-alcoholic cocktail gives a good punch. Very similar to a Bloody Mary but without the vodka, our improved version gives it that little extra zip.
150 ml passata
1 tbs each of Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice
2 drops of Tabasco sauce
Pinch each of freshly ground black pepper, mustard powder, cayenne pepper and celery salt
1 tsp grated horseradish
½ celery stick and slice of lemon, to garnish
Highball, Shaker, Blender
Crush enough ice cubes in a blender to fill the glass – don’t over-blend or it will melt too quickly. Add the rest of the ingredients, except the celery stalk and slice of lemon, then tip everything into the cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously to combine, then pour back into the glass. Garnish with the celery and slice of lemon.
Find The Mocktail Manual at good book stores nationally.