Coconut water has gained popularity among the health conscious in recent years. Whether its reputation is a fact or a fad, it is a cocktail ingredient that acts as a modifier and pairs well with many white spirits such as gin, tequila, white rum and in this case, vodka.
Not to be confused with coconut milk, coconut water is the cloudy juice inside the husk a coconut. Coconut milk is a thick, white liquid combining coconut water with the white flesh of the coconut.
On a hot summer’s day, there’s nothing more refreshing than sipping on a light and hydrating drink without too many calories. The ‘Cloudy with a Chance of Coconut Water’ cocktail takes inspiration from common flavours found in Thai cuisine: lemongrass for a subtle citrusy flavour, fresh ginger juice for spice and an extra zing, fresh lime juice for acidity, thirst-quenching coconut water as the hero ingredient – all coming together in a vodka-based cocktail.
The coconut water vodka cocktail required a little preparation but it’s not too difficult to master. For best results, the ginger needs to be juiced fresh and the lemongrass syrup needs to be prepared in advance (refer to instructions below).
To make the lemongrass syrup, simmer the chopped lemongrass in water to extract and concentrate the flavour before adding the sugar and turning it into a syrup. This method preserves the brightness of the lemongrass flavour as opposed to cooking it by boiling sugar and water with lemongrass.
Here’s how to make the ‘Cloudy with a Chance of Coconut’ cocktail, a vodka cocktail with coconut water, lemongrass, lime and ginger.
Coconut Water Vodka Cocktail: ‘Cloudy with a Chance of Coconut Water’ Recipe
Recipe by Cocktails & Bars
- 60 ml vodka
- 20 ml coconut water
- 20 ml lemongrass syrup *
- 15 ml lime juice
- 1 barspoon fresh ginger juice **
Garnish: lemongrass leaf on a mini peg
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker, fill half way with ice and shake hard until cold. Strain into a chilled coupette and garnish the stem of the glass with a lemongrass leaf on a mini peg.
* To make lemongrass syrup, peel the outer layer of one lemongrass stalk and discard it. Press the stem with the flat side of a knife to bruise and release the essential oils then cut it into small pieces. In a small pan, add 1 cup of water and the chopped lemongrass. Bring to the boil then simmer for 10-15 minutes until reduced by half. Remove the lemongrass, measure the remaining liquid and add an equal amount of white sugar. Heat gently until all the sugar has dissolved. Leave to cool then strain into a jar with a lid.
** To juice ginger, start by breaking off the desired amount of ginger and scraping the skin off with a spoon. You can either run it through a juicer, or finely grate the ginger over a cheesecloth-lined small bowl, wrap the cheesecloth around the grated ginger and twist to squeeze the juice.
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