Kumquat ginger mojito

After our foray into kumquat tangerine cookies, we had leftover kumquats. Jess and I are adamant about trying use up all of our available resources and have sometimes given ourselves an Iron Chef-style challenge to use up our existing ingredients to make dinner. After a bit of researching of possible ways to use up our remaining kumquats, I came across Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s recipe for kumquat mojitos. We made it once, and it was lovely, but I felt it needed a little kick to it.

Let me back up. I’m a huge fan of fancy cocktails. I have always been the bartender at various college get-togethers. In fact, after having bartended many, many college parties by the end of my sophomore year, two sets of friends independently gave me cocktail shakers for my 20th (yes, I said 20th, not 21st) birthday. I am the proud owner of two stainless-steel fancy cocktail shakers. I’ve decided that I’m going to try to include some drink recipes here on our blog because every now and then, one needs a good cocktail, especially if you’re having a kickass party and you want to impress your guests.

Kumquat Ginger Mojitos (serves 8-10) adapted from Jean-Georges Vongerichten

1/2 c. mint leaves
30 kumquats, halved (make sure to remove the seeds!)
1 1/2 cup white rum
12 oz. orange juice concentrate
1 liter club soda
1 lime, cut into wedges
splash of ginger beer

In a large pitcher, combine 15 kumquats (or 30 halves) and mint leaves. Using a large wooden spoon, vigorously muddle the mixture, crushing the kumquats so they release their juice. Squeeze the remaining kumquats into the pitcher to release the juice into the muddled mixture, and discard the rinds. I did this so that the pitcher wouldn’t be as full of kumquat rinds but would still get enough flavor from the fruit.

Pour in the juice concentrate, rum, and club soda. Squeeze in the lime wedges. Fill the pitcher with ice and pour into glasses. Add a splash of ginger beer to each glass to taste (depending on how spicy your ginger beer is).

I’ve been on a kind of ginger kick lately, and one of the good things about moving to New England is the access to different products. I tried this ginger beer at a cafe and it is so delightfully spicy– it made a great complement to the citrusy nature of this drink. I seriously recommend this ginger beer. We also used it to make Moscow Mules, and it was delicious.

Sit back, relax, and enjoy your beverage.