Sunday, September 27, 2009

Mixology Monday XLII: A Dairy Drink That Will Surely Make You Dizzy with Delight

The Maltese is a creamy, bittersweet delight.

Egg whites bestow cocktails with a silky smooth texture that makes for a magical mouthfeel. Cream adds a richness that instantly puts cocktails in the category of “dessert” or “breakfast.” (How many of us have enjoyed a Ramos Gin Fizz in the AM hours, before putting food into our gullets?) And speaking of gullets, this month’s Mixology Monday is hosted by Chris Amirault at eGullet Forums. Chris has asked us to use dairy products in our cocktail, and we have decided to put forward one that uses two just like our friend Ramos: heavy cream and egg whites.

We came up with the idea for our cocktail this summer when we were working with Piedmont Distillers for a special Spirited Lunch at Bourbon House during Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. The dessert in question: molasses and cornmeal custard with creole cream cheese ice cream. Instead of finding something complementary to pair with the cornmeal custard (which has the breadlike consistency of an Indian pudding), we decided to go all-out dairy and try to match the flavors in the dish with the flavors in the drink.

Since we were making the cocktail for a Southern dish, why not use Southern ingredients. So we brewed up a pot of chicory coffee (perfect for morning or postprandial sipping), and reached for the bottle of Grandma’s Molasses. Catdaddy, the flavored moonshine we used in our cocktails for the lunch, has just the right sweetness to marry the bitterness of the coffee and molasses, and by adding cream and egg white, the frothiness you get from shaking the hell out of the mixture makes for a pretty, layered concoction. We couldn’t just stop there though and had to add some orange-scented chocolate shavings just to give it another dimension.

The Maltese
(created by Cocktail Buzz)

2 ounces Catdaddy Carolina Moonshine (now Catdaddy Spiced Moonshine)
3 ounces chilled strong coffee (try one with chicory)
1 ounces heavy cream
1 tablespoon molasses
1 egg white
orange & spice-flavored chocolate shavings, as garnish (we use Green & Black’s Organic Maya Gold, but you can improvise)

In a shaker, add all the ingredients except garnish and shake vigorously for about a minute until the mixture gets slightly frothy. Then fill with ice and shake again vigorously for another minute. Strain into glasses. Grate chocolate over each to taste.

Serves 2.

Photo © Steve Schul, Cocktail Buzz

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