Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail Recipe + My Weekly Wrap Up!

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This weekend I wanted to share my new apple cider vinegar cocktail recipe! It’s a refreshing and light cocktail that can be made with either vodka or gin. Plus it’s a great way to sneak in those extra probiotics.

Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail Recipe! This apple cider vinegar cocktail recipe can be made with either vodka or gin. And it's a great way to sneak in those extra probiotics!

I know not everyone particularly enjoys the taste of apple cider vinegar, but it’s surprisingly easy to hide. Just to be sure, however, I had my friend Cathy also give my apple cider vinegar cocktail recipe a whirl and she enjoyed it as much as I do!

Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail Recipe

© Rebecca D. Dillon

Ingredients:

1 oz. vodka or gin
.5 oz. Bragg’s apple cider vinegar
.5 oz. simple syrup
3 oz. club soda
several dashes Wigle Organic Rosemary Lavender Cocktail Bitters

Notes:

I use Bragg’s raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar specifically for this recipe as it contains the “mother.” The “mother” is what offers all that probiotic goodness. Not only is Bragg’s apple cider vinegar rich in potassium, but it also helps to support a healthy immune system.

I’ve been buying my Bragg’s apple cider vinegar from Thrive Market as they have such great prices on natural and organic foods – plus freebies a few times a month with a $49 purchase! But you can also find Bragg’s apple cider vinegar in the organic section of your local grocery store.

Vinegar has historically been used in cocktails and in recent years has been making quite the comeback in handcrafted artisan cocktails. Typically called drinking vinegar or shrubs, these vinegars come in a variety of amazing flavors with the simple syrup already added. They are incredibly delicious both in cocktail recipes as well as when mixed with regular filtered water or club soda.

You can learn more about shrubs from the book, Shrubs: An Old Fashioned Drink for Modern Times, by Michael Dietsch. This book is available in both hardcover and for kindle. (If you don’t own a kindle you can still purchase and read the kindle version with Amazon’s free kindle reading app.)

Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail Recipe! This apple cider vinegar cocktail recipe can be made with either vodka or gin. And it's a great way to sneak in those extra probiotics!

Instructions:

To make my apple cider vinegar cocktail simple measure out and combine all ingredients in a tall glass with ice and stir to combine. If desired, you can garnish your drink with a twist of lime or rosemary or even muddle a bit of lavender to add to the mix. Then simply sip and enjoy!

(If you like my apple cider vinegar cocktail recipe, then you may also like my cocktail recipe for Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch!)

As usual I’ve also been working on quite a few new projects this week. While some of them make the cut, not all of them always do. While it can be frustrating, I always learn something new from my DIY fails and sometimes I simply discover something unexpected.

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One interesting discovery I made this week is that bath bombs made using a mini bundt cake silicone mold will travel in your bath water (as illustrated by my instagram video above.)

The Prime Surprise Sweets Dash Button is a Wi-Fi connected device that orders Prime members a surprise box of delicious treats from small-batch artisans anytime you want, at just the press of a button.

Also this week I finally made it off the waitlist for Amazon’s Prime Surprise Sweets Dash Button! Being a fan of ipsy as well as a few other monthly beauty programs, I REALLY wanted to try this. The Prime Surprise Sweets Dash Button is a Wi-Fi connected device that orders Prime members a surprise box of delicious treats from small-batch artisans anytime you want, at just the press of a button. It’s my first ever dash button and I’m actually excited about this one. (I mean it’s perfect for those once a month cravings for sweets during a hormone surge, right?!)

You can purchase the Prime Surprise Sweets Dash Button here. (Or alternately, if it’s not available, you can get on the waitlist. I was approved after about a week.) Like other dash buttons, you’ll pay $4.99 up front which is then credited back to your first order. (Not an Amazon Prime member? You can sign up for a 30-day free trial here.)

Pineapple Rose Shea + Clay Artisan Soap Loaf by Skin Kitchn

I also fell in love with a new Etsy shop I discovered this week called Skin Kitchn. This Sacramento, California small business is run by Dori Nicole who creates lovingly crafted artisan soaps for sensitive skin. You can buy artisan soaps by the loaf or by the bar.

Pictured is Dori’s wildly popular Pineapple Rose Shea + Clay Artisan Soap Loaf made with shea butter and sweet almond oil. It’s lightly scented with a tropical mix of pineapple and papaya with Rose Clay added for color. You can check out the full line of Skin Kitchn products on Etsy here. You can discover more artisan products to fall in love with by visiting my Etsy favorites here.

I hope every enjoys the rest of the weekend! Be sure to follow me across all of my social media including PinterestG+TumblrFacebookTwitterBlog Lovin’, and Instagram for more exciting finds and recipes. Or sign up to receive new posts directly to your email via FeedBurner.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.


Natural Insect Repellent Spray Recipe

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

This natural insect repellent spray recipe really works and is perfect for every outdoor enthusiast! Use this insect repellent spray to deter biting insects when camping, hiking, biking and gardening this summer!

This natural insect repellent spray recipe really works and is perfect for every outdoor enthusiast! Use this insect repellent spray to deter biting insects when camping, hiking, biking and gardening this summer! Simply mist this spray on your skin after showering and as needed throughout the day.

Natural Insect Repellent Spray Recipe

Adapted from The Mountain Rose Herbs Blog

Ingredients:

2 oz. witch hazel extract
2 oz. catnip or peppermint hydrosol
2 oz. distilled water
1 mL (20 drops) lemon eucalyptus essential oil
1 mL (20 drops) lavender essential oil
1/2 mL (10 drops) lemongrass essential oil
1/2 mL (10 drops) Virginia cedarwood essential oil

Instructions:

To make this natural insect repellent spray recipe you’ll need to begin by using a digital scale to weigh out the witch hazel, catnip hydrosol and distilled water. Combine into a 6 – 8 oz. spray bottle using a funnel. (I used this Boston round bottle with mini spray trigger from SKS Bottle & Packaging.) Using a graduated transfer pipette or dropper, add the essential oils to the bottle then screw on the trigger sprayer. Shake well to combine the ingredients and again before each use.

To extend the shelf life of this natural insect repellent spray and to help you and your loved ones cool down on a hot summer day, store this in the refrigerator between uses. And don’t forget to pack it for your next hiking or camping trip!

Like this natural insect repellent spray recipe? Then you may also like my homemade cold process soap recipe for making your own DIY Summer Festival Soap! It’s perfect for anyone who plans to spend a lot of time outdoors this summer and is also made with natural essential oils known for their biting insect repelling properties. You can find my DIY Summer Festival Soap Recipe here.

For even more of my natural skin care recipes be sure to visit Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen. You can also follow me on Pinterest for collections of my favorite bath and beauty recipes from around the web.

Also be sure to catch all of all my new beauty and skin care recipes by following Soap Deli News blog via Blog Lovin’ or Tumblr. You can also find me on FacebookTwitter, G+ and Instagram.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.


Homemade DIY Gin Recipe and a Simple DIY Gin Kit

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Homemade Gin Kit and DIY Gin Recipe

I’ve been trying lots of new DIY projects lately and one I’m super psyched about is this homemade DIY gin kit. It’s available for sale at Amazon (Amazon Prime eligible) as well as Darby Smart, where I’ve been purchasing a lot of my DIY craft kits lately.

I’ve been tempted for a while to buy the entire kit, but I instead opted for simply purchasing the homemade gin refill kit available from Darby Smart which is essentially a tin of the botanicals you need to infuse vodka to taste like gin. It’s $15 with free shipping and makes sense if you want to try this out before buying the botanicals in bulk for your own recipe blend. And since you have to buy the vodka anyway, you can simply re-use the same vodka bottle for the gin without having to fork out a lot of extra money for fancy vintage styled bottles. (Or if you want to get fancy, use a Bormioli Rocco Giara Bottle With Stopper.) Then simply use cheesecloth to drain the botanicals out of the final product.

Running your homemade gin through a Brita Everyday Water Filter Pitcher five times will remove any remaining sediment. (Be sure to start with a new filter and soak it in water for fifteen minutes before using.) This is optional of course depending on the end product you’re looking for. If you used cheap vodka I highly recommend not skipping this step.

Now use your homemade gin to make a classic French 75. (A French 75 is the same as the French 95 but it’s made with gin instead of bourbon. (Check out this popular recipe here.)

If you’re ready to make your own botanical blend – and get more bang for your buck – give this DIY gin recipe a go. Then feel free to punch it up with other botanicals of your choosing.

DIY Gin Recipe

Ingredients:

3 Tablespoons juniper berries
1/2 plus 1/4 teaspoons coriander seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons dried chamomile flowers
1/2 plus 1/4 teaspoons dried lavender flowers
5 cardamon pods, broken into pieces
6 whole allspice berries
1 bay leaf
1 Tablespoon dried grapefruit peel

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in large glass jar with 3 cups of vodka and tightly close lid. Shake well then allow to steep for 36 hours. Strain through cheesecloth and then use a funnel to fill up your final bottle of choice.

Experiment with making your own homemade DIY gin recipes by adding or subbing some of the ingredients with a small amount of other herbs and botanicals such as but not limited to Star Anise, whole cloves, Thai basil, cherrywood, whole nutmeg, and cilantro leaf.

Also be sure to follow my new-ish Cocktail Hour board on Pinterest for homemade cocktail recipes for all occasions. Or follow Soap Deli News via Blog Lovin’ and never miss a post!


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.


Hunter’s French 95 Cocktail Recipe

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Hunter's French 95 Cocktail Recipe - A delicious custom version of the 1920's cocktail made with bourbon and champagne!

Bourbon has never been my drink of choice, however, Hunter – the man behind the scenes and behind the bar at a local restaurant called Lucky – was able to bring me around.

Hunter is without a doubt the best mixologist I know. While he’s only been bartending for 4 1/2 years, he has a unique knack for not only mixing drinks to perfection, but has also mastered the skill of inventing his own great cocktails. Key ingredients are house made like the lemongrass infused tonic, simple syrup, maraschino cherries and even smoked apple ice cubes that are paired with small batch bourbon. Other ingredients are simply fresh from the source like the shaken egg whites that go into my favorite drink, the Silver Fizz, and seasonal drinks made using fresh watermelon or cucumber. Finally, you’ll only find top shelf liquor behind this bar.

How to Make Hunter's Version of the French 95 Classic Cocktail

Of course, with such devotion to the drinks, you can’t leave out the food. The menu at Lucky is also chosen and invented with the same care as the cocktails as Hunter strives to bring the best of both worlds – food and drinks – together for a phenomenal experience.

DIY Homemade French 95 Cocktail Recipe

The drink that brought me around to bourbon is the French 95. Hunter of course has put his own twist on the recipe that has fans around the city asking bartenders at other bars, both locally and while traveling, to make a French 95 like Hunter does. I’ve yet to find another local establishment that can meet the expectations that Hunter has set, but then not everyone stocks the same bourbon or creates their simple syrup and garnish from scratch.

How to Make a French 95 Cocktail

Still, Hunter was kind enough to share his love of bourbon with us, by sharing his cocktail recipe for the French 95. First created in the 1920s, the French 95 is quickly rising in popularity in Roanoke much in the way Cosmos took off again after Mad Men first aired. Here’s his version of the recipe.

French 95 Cocktail Recipe

Hunter’s French 95 Cocktail Recipe

Ingredients:

1 oz. Evan Williams Black Bourbon
1 oz. lemon juice
1 oz. simple syrup
2 dashes Regan’s Orange Bitters
3 oz. Cava Sparkling Wine
Maraschino Cherry

Instructions:

Combine the bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup and orange bitters in a shaker with crushed ice and shake well. Now strain into a champagne coupe – a delightful glass rumored to have been patterned after Marie Antoinette’s breasts for all of you Jeopardy fans – then finish by pouring the champagne or sparkling wine on top and adding a cherry.

Should you live in Roanoke, VA or are simply visiting, I highly recommend you add Lucky to your “to do” list. It’s definitely an experience you’ll love to have again and again. You can find Lucky online and on facebook. They are open six days a week Monday through Saturday for dinner starting at 5pm.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.


Great Stuff to Buy & DIY

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Lately I am just in love with my weekends. My New Year’s resolution was to do more social networking but to do it in real life. While that means a little less time getting my craft on, it also means a happier, more positive – and perhaps even a better connected – me. However, should the cold or the rain be keeping you in this weekend, here are a few of my newest favorite finds you can buy, DIY and, of course, eat. Plus a few random things that every girl should just know just in case – like how to stock a bar cart.

Crafty Fab Finds to Buy and DIY

Clockwise from top left: {BUY} Grasshopper Stapler via Anthropologie / {EAT} Tex Mex Rice and Black Bean Salad Wraps via Yummy Mummy Kitchen / {KNOW} How to Stock a Bar Cart via A Beautiful Mess / {BUY} Handmade Valentine’s Day Cards & Giveaway via Julie Ann Art

Best Weekend DIY Projects

Clockwise from top left: {DIY} Steel Pipe Chandelier via Something is Done / {DIY} Rose Body Scrub via Oh So Pretty / {EAT} Popcorn Macaron with Salted Caramel Filling via Eat, Show & Tell / {DIY} Photograph Poster Prints via Home Tree Atlas

Cool Stuff to DIY

Clockwise from top left: {BUY} Polaroid Socialmatic Camera via Poppytalk / {DIY} Whiskey & Woodsmoke Bear Balm via Transient Expression / {DRINK} PMS Herbal Relief Tea Recipe via DIY Natural / {DIY} Solitaire Hex Bolt Pendant via Instructables

For more of my favorite DIY and recipe finds, be sure to follow my boards on Pinterest!


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.