When it comes to mixed drinks, I’m not overly adventurous. Back in my college days, I learned that it was safest to stick to one type drink for the night, and now that I’m a mom – well let’s just say if I even GET one drink one night a week I’m doing pretty good!
Even if I can’t hang like I used to, it doesn’t mean I don’t still want a refreshing little pick me up every once and a while! And while I know I can always turn to my signature vodka cranberry, I’ve also started to get a bit more adventurous in my drink mixing. Take the margaritas I made for Cinco de Mayo with HOMEMADE sweet and sour. (Yes, it is a hundred times better than the store-bought stuff!)
The best part is, while my built in taste tester/hubby may be a bit reluctant to try an avocado pudding or matcha pancakes, I have yet to see him turn down a cocktail! 🙂 So, in the spirit of becoming an expert mixologist, I had my friend Gordo (who I’m pretty sure has been a bartender at some point in his life…) come over and teach me a thing or two about mojitos.
Well at least that was the plan. It turned out to be more me sitting their ‘taste testing’ and him doing all the work. But hey, I had a good time!
After he showed me his method I tinkered around with it a bit more and devised another way of mixing them up that kept the ‘chunks’ out. My husband absolutely hates berry seeds of any kind in anything, so by straining the puree through the nut milk bag (Shameless Plug: I love the ellies best ones – code heapingtbsp for 10% off) I got all of the seeds out, but still managed to keep all of the flavor! When it come to straining the mixture in the final step, it’s completely up to you. Leaving the mint in makes them much prettier, and contributes to flavor, but if you’re like me and like to drink your drinks with a straw (is that weird!?) the mint will almost certainly plug your straw and that’s just not cool.
Frozen or fresh blackberries work great in this. I use frozen because they’re cheaper! 🙂
- 2 cups Blackberries, fresh or frozen, plus extra for garnish
- 1/4 cup Raw Sugar (white will work in a pinch) plus more for dipping
- Raw Sugar (white will work in a pinch)
- 4 Limes, 3 juiced, 1 sliced for garnish
- White rum (I like Bacardi)
- 12 large Mint leaves, washed and sliced into strips, plus extra for garnish
- Sparkling Water
- Crushed Ice
The blackberry puree can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 3 days. To make crushed ice just throw some ice cubes in a blender!
Toss the blackberries into a blender and pulse a few times until the mixture is mostly smooth. Strain through a piece of cheesecloth or nut milk bag (I love Ellie's Best!) into the saucepan you used for the simple syrup. You should have about a cup of liquid.
Add the sugar and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a low simmer, stirring occasionally until it coats the back of the spoon, but it still fairly liquid. Set aside to cool.
Add 3 mint leaves, 2 tbsp of blackberry puree, a tbsp of raw sugar, and the juice from 1/2 a lime to the bottom of a tall glass and use a muddler to crush everything together. Add 2 - 2.5 oz of Bacardi to the glass and swirl to combine.
Fill a shaker with ice cubes. Pour the blackberry mix over the ice and shake vigorously for 30 seconds.
Rinse out the original glass, making sure to wet the rim, swirl the top of the glass in the raw sugar (pour it into a small bowl to make it easier) and fill halfway with crushed ice. Pour the shaken mixture over the crushed ice and top with sparkling water. Garnish with mint and a blackberry.
*Note* You can also shake everything in the glass, skip the crushed ice and sugar on the rim and leave the mint leaves in (like shown in the pic). It's pretty, but a little harder to drink! Whatever you like!