Boozy Cocktail Gummy Bears

  1. This is a story of how something that was supposed to be delicious was absolutely disgusting then went all the way around to being beyond delicious.

Boozy Cocktail Gummy Bears

I was reading an online article about how an $8 bottle of rose wine from Aldi had won second prize in some international wine competition.  I’ve been toying with the idea of some alcoholic gummy bears and had already ordered the molds (thanks Amazon Prime for fulfilling my every whim).  I got pretty excited and started to research wine flavored candies and gummies.  Right away I found this recipe, but I had two problems.

Problem the first, they seemed so basic and it is my personal mission to overgild the lily whenever possible.  Problem the second, I didn’t want to like, drive to Aldi to get the rose.  So I hatched a plan to make my bears with some moscato I had on hand (yum!) and to add some extra yumminess with the real fruit flavor of strawberries.  I had powdered some dehydrated strawberries for another recipe so I was good to go.  Usually when I start to feel very smug about my superior recipe ideas it’s right about time to make something truly and remarkably unpalatable.  And in case that’s not enough foreshadowing for you, I was feeling VERY smug about these Strawberry-Moscato Gummy Bears.

First I cooked everything up according to the directions and added a few tablespoons of strawberry powder right at the end.  Then I poured them into the molds, let them set up for awhile and then unmolded them, super excited to see the mini-masterpieces I had just created.  The first problem was that the orange-ish red of the strawberry powder combined with the clumpy, gelatinous and mottled texture made these poor bears look like they had been crafted from discarded organ meats.  No biggie, I thought.  They are going to taste amazing and that’s what counts.  I can work on the appearance.  Maybe add some red food dye or use the hand blender to get them smoother.  Nope, after tasting them I realized the their appearance was their best feature.  By some feat of hellish alchemy, I had perfectly balanced the mustiness of the wine with the acidity of the strawberries and achieved a flavor as close to barf as anything I have ever willingly tasted.  Then maybe I ate 5 more just to be sure they really were super-disgusting.  Then I made my husband eat some.  He is usually diplomatic but simply said, “Those are not good”.

Since I sort of hate being wrong, I uncorked a bottle of rose I found lurking in the wine cabinet and decided to make them just as the recipe recommended.  These sure looked a lot better!  Pale pink, perfectly clear.  But they just didn’t taste that good to me.  I guess I just don’t like wine-flavored gummy bears.  But I do like fancy cocktails.

So here’s how I’ve atoned for those Meat-Barf Bears:  Lovely, boozy, flavorful and fancy gummy bears based on a few of my favorite cocktails.  I started with the Aviation ones.  An Aviation is a mix of gin, maraschino liquor, lemon juice and Creme de Violette.  I didn’t have the latter so I just added a drop of purple food dye to give the bears that iconic Aviation color.

Aviation Gummy Bears

Next up, my personal favorite, Manhattan bears.  Whiskey, sweet vermouth, bitters and a hit of maraschino syrup right from the jar.  This is the recipe that made it necessary to carry my great aunt Helen down the stairs to the car on multiple Christmas Eves.

Boozy Manhattan Gummy Bears

And finally, sweet limoncello bears.  Straight limoncello, fruity, frosty and a bit bitter.  The drink that reminds me of long, relaxed Italian meals served at an appropriately late hour.

Limoncello Gummy Bears

All three versions were delicious.  I think you could adapt this recipe to any favorite cocktail, spirit, or liqueur.  I’m thinking of trying some Chambord ones.  And maybe a batch with the new Absolut flavor:  Wild Tea and Elderflower.  I think the sky’s the limit here.  The only special equipment you need to make these are the molds.  You can order a set of molds with a dropper here.  This item is two molds that each make fifty bears and is just right for one batch.  If you want to double your recipe, you will need to have more molds on hand, as the mixture all needs to be dispensed right away before it sets.  I had some small silicon heart molds that I used too, just to try out a different shape.  And definitely use the dropper that comes with the molds.  I tried just pouring the mixture in and then smoothing with an offset spatula.  It actually took longer and was very messy.  The dropper makes it a quick and tidy job.

Boozy Manhattan Gummy Bears

These are so simple.  They really take less than a half an hour from start to finish.  You could be mixing these up at 4:30 and popping them into your mouth at 5:00.  And it’s got to be five o’clock somewhere.  Cheers!

Print Recipe
Boozy Cocktail Gummy Bears
These versatile treats have a texture like mini jello-shots but a bit firmer. Use 4 ounces of any liquor, spirit or juice you like. Make sure to have a flat spot in your fridge ready to lay them while they set up in the molds. These can be done in about a half an hour start to finish.
Boozy Cocktail Gummy Bears
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Passive Time 15 minutes
Servings
bears
Ingredients
Aviation Bears
Manhattan Bears
Limoncello Bears
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Passive Time 15 minutes
Servings
bears
Ingredients
Aviation Bears
Manhattan Bears
Limoncello Bears
Boozy Cocktail Gummy Bears
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, stir the gelatin and sugar until well combined. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until smooth.
  2. Heat over medium-low heat until the gelatin and sugar have dissolved. If you want to keep all the alcohol, use a candy thermometer to keep your mixture under 90 degrees F.
  3. Once dissolved, use an eye dropper (included with the molds), to fill each gummy bear cavity. This recipe will fill two 50-bear molds.
  4. Put in the fridge for at least 15 minutes to set, up to overnight. Unmold and refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to serve. Keeps for about a week.
Share this Recipe

Grapefruit Curd

Grapefruit Curd

I’ve been on a quest for the perfect IPA-inspired dessert.  Spoiler alert:  this post is not about that dessert because I’m still mulling it over and tinkering and drinking beer for research.  But I know a few things about this mythical sweet.  It must have hops.  It must have conifers.  And it must have grapefruit.  My love for lemon curd borderlines on fetish, so I thought grapefruit curd had to be even better.

Grapefruit Curd

For this recipe you cook down the grapefruit juice by half to concentrate the flavor.  I reduced the sugar a bit to make up for how sweet the grapefruit reduction is.  I added a bit of pink food dye to make it look the color of grapefruit juice but you can leave it as-is too.  This yummy curd has the bright flavor of grapefruit with just a hint of bitterness.  It’s great anywhere you would usually use lemon curd.  This particular grapefruit curd was layered with caramelized spruce syrup and vanilla buttercream between layers of white cake for a decadent cake. Since it was the cutting cake for one of my favorite friend’s wedding, I topped it off with some white chocolate “sails” brushed with edible gold and her lovely vintage toppers.  So fancy!

grapefruit curd

I spent a lot of time driving myself crazy over the perfect cake but in the end I just went with a version of this cake and I think it was just right.  The gold stand, gold leaf, gold sails, gold sprinkles, #goldeverything really glam-ed up the simple green ombre frosting that hinted at the spruce flavor inside.

grapefruit curd

Print Recipe
Grapefruit Curd
Grapefruit Curd
Servings
Ingredients
Servings
Ingredients
Grapefruit Curd
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, reduce the grapefruit juice by half to 1/2 c over medium-high heat. Allow to cool slightly.
  2. Add eggs, egg yolks and sugar and cook over low heat until mixture begins to thicken and coats the back of a spoon, 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter one tablespoon at a time until smooth. Stir in grapefruit zest.
  3. Pour in bowl or jar and cover top with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming. Keeps in the fridge for a week, in the freezer for a month.
Share this Recipe

Carmelized Spruce Syrup

During all those walks around the neighborhood gathering violets and dandelions for jelly, I started to notice that baking inspiration literally grows on trees around here.  There are lilacs, redbuds and magnolias galore.  They all have edible parts but I was all flowered out.  Then I happened to see a post from Once Upon A Weed about spruce syrup and remembered there’s a spruce growing in the parkway just a few blocks from here.  It’s about 40 feet tall and absolutely covered in itty-bitty spruce tips. Continue reading “Carmelized Spruce Syrup”

Weezy’s Honey Cake

 

I love my little weirdos.  All of my three kids have special talents and hilarious quirks.  My son has an insane amount of energy, charm, musical ability and dramatic flair.  If the entire cast of a cruise ship musical production could be crammed into one person, that would be Simon on a slow day.  My middle daughter, Ramona, is artistic, soulful and passionate.  Her art teacher once told me, “She’s like a conduit, the ideas and inspiration just pour out of her.”  I wish this were a kids’ art blog because she is truly gifted. Continue reading “Weezy’s Honey Cake”

Lemon Blackberry Cake with Matcha Marshmallow Frosting

Mother’s Day is just around the corner.  Last year I decided to forego the fancy brunches and forced outings and just spent some time working on a cake that pleased my palate.  And my palette!  I wanted something light and tart paired with something unexpected.  Something that could be made and assembled quickly but still look and taste impressive. Continue reading “Lemon Blackberry Cake with Matcha Marshmallow Frosting”

Strawberry-Matcha Meringues

Strawberry-Matcha MeringuesI’m founding a local chapter of the PWHGCMOM’s, that’s People Who Have Gone Completely Mental Over Meringues.  I am pretty sure meetings will be well-attended and sticky and borderline diabetic.  Meringues are just the best.   Continue reading “Strawberry-Matcha Meringues”

Violet Jelly

Violet JellyAlong with the lovely tradition of making dandelion jelly in the spring, I also grew up with violet jelly. As a girl it took a lot of time to gather the hundreds of flowers needed to fill my mom’s pint jar. It often involved walking with my sister to parks and lawns that were further from the house than we were used to roaming. It was an adventure. Continue reading “Violet Jelly”

Pussy Willow and Speckled Eggs Cookies

Pussy Willow Speckled Egg CookiesMan do I hate making royal icing.  I hardly ever do.  Most of the cookies I make, I just work the designs around what colors are available in Betty Crocker cookie icing.  But a friend of mine whose family ran a bakery posted some pics of cookies she had dipped in icing and they looked so lovely I thought I’d give it another try.  Royal icing is a simple mix of egg whites, powdered sugar and extract or lemon juice.  No big deal, right?  Am I not the Master Of All Baked Goods?  Do I not bleed icing?

Continue reading “Pussy Willow and Speckled Eggs Cookies”

Blackberry Bramble Bars

Blackberry Bramble BarsDespite my own personal views, apparently cupcakes are not the solution to every problem.  Sometimes you need to bake something for a brunch, for a potluck, or for a weekend treat and for some reason cupcakes just won’t work.  Sigh.  You don’t have to like it, but you do have to have a go-to, delicious, and simple recipe that will still get rave reviews.  This is it.  Plus, they have fruit in their name, so I’m thinking they’re probably very healthy. Continue reading “Blackberry Bramble Bars”