Caipirinha: The perfect summertime cocktail

CaipirinhaLooking for the perfect drink for summer? Look no further than the citrus-y, sweet caipirinha (pronounced kai-per-een-yah), a signature drink for Brazil’s Carnivale where revelers really need something to help them cool down after hours of dancing in the hot sun!

While articles like this one in the Chicago Sun Times talk about caipirinha variations made with raspberry and other flavours, I see no reason to reinvent an already fantastic drink that’s easy to make. There are four ingredients in a classic caipirinha: fresh limes, fruit sugar, crushed ice and cachaça (pronounced ka-shah-sah), which is made from sugar cane and tastes similar to white rum.

Want to make one right now? Follow these easy steps:

1. Cut half a lime into four pieces. Place in a cocktail shaker or sturdy glass. Sprinkle over 2 tbsp (30 mL) sugar and muddle the limes using a wooden cocktail muddler or a wooden spoon until the mixture is juicy and a lot of the sugar has dissolved.
2. Pour in two shots of cachaça and stir well. Transfer to a double old-fashioned glass and top with enough crushed ice to fill the glass. Stir before serving.

By the way, my friend and professional food photographer Tracy Cox took the photo for today’s post. After this shot was taken, she and I and Sabrina took these very drinks outside to our Test Kitchen patio and toasted the sunshine on Victoria Day Monday. After all, if you’re working on a holiday, there should be some perks, right? You can see more of Tracy’s work on her website.

13 Responses to Caipirinha: The perfect summertime cocktail

  1. Gorgeous shot. I popped by Tracy’s site and she makes a plain old glass of milk look stunning.

    Never heard of this drink before but it sounds perfect for a hot summer day. Glad you took the time to test this thoroughly.

  2. danamccauley says:

    A bit too thoroughly this weekend! I made a pitcher of them for a bbq and they went down a bit too easily!

  3. Barb says:

    I got on a mojito kick a couple of summers ago. This looks like a close second (with variations as I’ll substitute white rum.

  4. Diva says:

    They do go down easy! You’re right, a perfect summer refresher. Yum!

    Gorgeous photo too. I also went to her site and the images are just stunning. Wow!

  5. I nearly ordered one on the weekend. I’ve been wanting to try one for ages. But the craving for a simple G & T won.

  6. cheryl says:

    That looks totally refreshing, and I’d like a glass immediately. I agree with Barb that it looks just as good as a mojito. Do I really have to say “cachaca” when I go to the liquor store, though? There’s no way I’m going to remember that word.

  7. Diana says:

    I love summery drinks like this and mojito. I had my first mint julep a few weeks ago at a restaurant in NYC, and the amount of liquor in it knocked my socks off! Nonetheless, the mint was very refreshing.

  8. danamccauley says:

    Sipping is the key to Victory with these sunshine drinks.

  9. Sad to say… no limes in Umbria. Boo-hoo because that is one fine cocktail!
    Try a Last Word with lemon, also refreshing…but can be deadly so only one, ok? Equal parts: gin, lemon or lime juice, chartreuse and maraschino liquore. Shake, smile, serve!

  10. Amy Snider says:

    Wish I could have been there….

  11. danamccauley says:

    Amy, we always love having you around for cocktail hour! We’ll, have to have some again soon – maybe next sunny Friday afternoon?

    Judith, this just gives you something to look forward to when you get back to NYC. In the meantime, I’ll try the Last Word. My hubby loves chartreuse so I think that drink will be a hit at our house.

  12. Purg says:

    hmmm…that sounds like a great drink idea. Its a bit too cold for one right now…maybe I will wait until Spring!

  13. Keyanna says:

    Superb inromfation here, ol’e chap; keep burning the midnight oil.

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