15 November 2014

Weekend Cooking: Skinnygirl Cocktails by Bethenny Frankel

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Skinnygirl Cocktails by Bethenny FrankelWith the holidays fast approaching (Thanksgiving in the United States is less than two weeks away!), my thoughts are turning to entertaining and to those unwanted pounds we all seem to gain after too much celebration. Thus when I saw that Bethenny Frankel had come out with Skinnygirl Cocktails, I knew I had to take a look.

Right from the start, I liked Frankel's attitude toward the cocktail: keep it light, cut down on the high-calorie mixers, rely on low-sugar spirits, and don't skimp on flavor. Even better, many of her concoctions come in under 150 calories. What's not to love here?

If you start with Frankel's "Fixologist Formula," which provides the keys to becoming a low-cal bartender, and her suggested tools and ingredients, you'll quickly be ready to host a holiday party, a book club meeting, or a drinks night with friends. Or maybe you'll whip up a little something just for yourself while you cozy up to the fireplace or head on out to the deck, depending on the season.

Skinnygirl Cocktails @ Bethenny FrankelI like that the drinks are grouped into familiar categories: margaritas, martinis, sangrias, Champagne, and so on. I find myself drawn to both the holiday drinks (like mulled wine) and the herbal ones (such as a strawberry basil cocktail). Although I know I'll never make recipes like the Pink Panther (it's just a little too pink for me), most of the drinks are quite appealing--and are not just for women (for example, the straightforward Old Hollywood martini).

In addition to the absolutely gorgeous photos (see the scans), Frankel provides some party tips and ideas for snacks. There's even a how-to guide for making your own alcohol infusions and advice for getting out stains, in case there's a drink mishap.

The recipes in Skinnygirl Cocktails are on the trendy side and some have cute names (Lemon-Melon Tongue Twister), which make the book especially attractive to the younger set. On the other hand, the tips and techniques are rock solid, and the flavor combos are well thought out, so don't shy away from the pink cover. If you're looking for some fresh ideas to spark up your bar, you'll find them here.

Note that Frankel's recipes sometimes call for one of her own Skinnygirl products (spirits and wine). Fortunately, the ingredient lists also offer substitutions, so you won't feel locked into her brand.

This easy pear drink says fall to me. Perhaps it will make its way to our Thanksgiving dinner this year.

Pretty Pear

Skinnygirl Cocktails @ Bethenny FrankelOne drink, under 150 calories
  • 3-inch spring of fresh rosemary
  • 1 canned pear half (in light syrup), drained (or use pear puree)
  • 1 1/2 ounces light rum
  • 1 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • Lemon wheel for garnish
Strip the bottom inch of leaves from the rosemary sprig and reserve the sprig for garnish. Chop the rosemary leaves and put them in cocktail shaker. Add the pear half and muddle. Add the rum and lemon juice and shake with ice until well chilled. Double-strain (using both the cocktail strainer and a small sieve) into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with the rosemary sprig and a lemon wheel.

Published by Simon & Schuster / Touchstone, 2014
ISBN-13: 9781476773025
Source: Bought (eBook) (see review policy)
Copyright © cbl for Beth Fish Reads, all rights reserved (see review policy)


Sarah (Sarah's Book Shelves) 11/15/14, 8:07 AM  

So Bethany Frankel is legit, huh?! I'm not a big cocktail drinker (prefer wine), but my husband is. I do like the sound of the Pretty Pair and the Strawberry Basil drink! My friend swears by (better for you and also reduces your hangover) a gluten free vodka called Tito's...I wonder if Frankel mentioned that at all?

Sarah (Sarah's Book Shelves) 11/15/14, 8:08 AM  

Ooops - I meant Pear, not Pair obviously!

jama 11/15/14, 8:18 AM  

Not a cocktail drinker either, but that pear drink sounds tempting. This would make a great gift or something good to have on hand when entertaining guests.

bermudaonion 11/15/14, 8:28 AM  

I know several people who'd probably like this, especially around the holidays.

rhapsodyinbooks 11/15/14, 8:42 AM  

I like cocktails but try to stay away because of the calories - this cookbook sounds perfect!

Katherine P 11/15/14, 11:01 AM  

Oh this sounds fun and the Pretty Pear recipe sound delicious! I'm glad to hear this is such a versatile book. I'll have to look for this one!

Carole 11/15/14, 1:39 PM  

Love the idea of using pear in a cocktail - I'll have to buy a can or 2 to have it on hand. Cheers from Carole's Chatter!

ChaosIsAFriendOfMine 11/15/14, 3:35 PM  

I'm more of a wine girl but this sounds like it has some good recipes - a good gift idea for sure.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity 11/15/14, 3:44 PM  

Mmmmm! The Pretty Pear sounds delicious! We don't keep spirits in the house since hub isn't a drinker and I'll usually just settle in with a glass of wine rather than making a drink (we do have a bottle of Vodka but we bought it the day before I found out I was pregnant with Elle and it's never been opened!). I do love a tasty drink when out with friends and it seems as though more and more restaurants are serving up skinny versions.

Louise 11/15/14, 9:16 PM  

I do like a cocktail, and always mean to make some but never get around to it at home- I keep them more for a holiday/special time event. The pear cocktail sounds delicious.

shelleyrae @ book'd out 11/16/14, 6:02 AM  

there is nothing skinny about my favourite cocktail, the Fluffy Duck ( with Vodka instead of Gin). I'm not a big drinker though.

Daryl 11/16/14, 4:33 PM  

i am not a fan of mixed drinks but that Pretty Pear sounds tasty

Unknown 11/16/14, 7:10 PM  

I have heard of this book before and picked it up in the store several times. Glad to hear that it sounds like a good cocktail book, might have to check it out!

Julie Goucher 11/17/14, 4:53 AM  

I am nuch of drinker, prefering Tetley's (tea not beer!).

Late to the Weekend Cooking party and I hope to be better for 2015.

Julie P. 11/17/14, 11:00 AM  

Oh my goodness! This is perfect for me especially since we have a huge Christmas party!

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