Lily O'Brien's debuts indulgent 'Choctails' for all celebrations

The luxury chocolatier has created the perfect match of tasty treats and top tipples...

...for the people you really know!

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1. Golden Eggnog

Rich, sweet, spiced

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Ingredients:

- 50ml dark rum

- 25ml milk

- 20ml salted caramel syrup

- 1 whole egg

Method: Shaken

Glassware: Rock glass

Garnish: Cinnamon powder

SHAKE:

 1. Combine dark rum, milk, salted caramel syrup and 1 whole egg in a small metal shaker tin.

2. Fill with ice cubes until the top and close the shaker. Hard shake for 10 seconds until the shaker is frozen.

3. Double strain into a tumbler over ice cubes.

4. Garnish with cinnamon powder.

 

Salted caramel syrup:

- 300g water

- 300g white sugar

- 1g Maldon salt

1. Combine 300g of water and 300g of sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir until dissolved, about 5 minutes or so.

2. Turn the heat to medium-high—cover, and boil for about 3 minutes. Remove the lid and stir consistently until the mixture is a light amber colour. This process can take from 10 to 15 minutes.

3. Remove from heat immediately.

4. Pour the syrup into a container. The liquid may solidify because of the temperature shock but don’t worry if that happens. Add 200g of boiled water and stir until the sugar is dissolved.

5. Add the salt.

6. Bring to room temperature, then store it in an airtight container, like a mason jar, in the fridge. It will last up to 1 month.

Tips: This caramel syrup recipe is less than “simple,” however. Because of the high heat and watchful eye required to make it, it’s a more advanced syrup recipe. But don’t let that stop you from trying it! Though they sound similar, caramel syrup is quite different from caramel sauce which is usually made with heavy cream and butter. The consistency is thick — think of the stuff you’d drizzle over vanilla ice cream or apple pie.

 

On the other hand, caramel syrup is a thinner liquid ideal for stirring into drinks. It’s much runnier than caramel sauce. It still tastes like caramel and has that same caramel colour - plus, it’s dairy-free! Both are somewhat tricky to make, as caramelising sugar to make syrup, sauce, or candy requires high heat, and the mixture can burn quickly. Simple caramel syrup is made with just two ingredients: sugar and water. Well, three, if you decide to make salted caramel syrup.

Tricks: You can use cognac or brandy if you don’t have dark rum. You can use other milk of your choice - almonds, oat, and hazelnuts work very well too. If you don’t want to make the caramel syrup, don’t worry. You can buy it from a variety of brands.

PAIRING: Banoffee Pie and Hazelnut Torte.

Pairing with Banoffee Pie, banana-infused chocolate will announce the flavour of the cocktails, and the salted caramel adds extra sweetness to the drink, which is a blast of flavour perfect for an after-dinner treat.

2. Lily's Margarita

Fruity, citrus, fresh

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Ingredients:

- 45ML tequila

- 15ml star anise-infused Cointreau

- 10ml apple cordial

- 20ml lime juice

 

Method: Shaken

Glassware: Coupette

SHAKE  

1. Combine tequila, Cointreau, apple cordial, and lime juice in a small metal shaker tin.

2. Fill to the top with ice cubes and close the shaker. Hard shake for 10 seconds until the shaker is frozen.

3. Double strain into a coupette glass.

 

Apple cordial:

- 3 whole chopped green apples

- 1 whole lemon (peel skin and flesh)

- 400g white sugar

- 200g apple juice

 

1. Peel the green apples and lemons and chop them into small pieces.

2. Mix them (peel and flesh) in a saucepan with sugar and apple juice.

3. Bring it to a boil and cook for 10 minutes at medium-high heat while stirring occasionally.

4.  Remove from heat and let it rest for one hour.  

5. Strain into a bottle.

6. Store it in the fridge for up to three weeks.

 

Star anise-infused Cointreau:

A strong anise flavour will characterise your Cointreau, giving a nice touch to your cocktails, such as A Tropical Winter. A warm infusion with a winter recall that you can combine with tropical fruits, as in the drink above.

 

- 300ml Cointreau

- 6 star anise

1. Combine star anises and Cointreau into a jar and seal it.

2. Gently stir occasionally and let it infuse for four hours. 

3.  Strain the liquid in a bottle and store it at room temperature for up to three months.

 

TIPS: A great syrup that will give you the feeling of eating an apple pie! You can use it as the sweet part of a classic Gimlet or Moscow mule or add it to your mocktails. Delicious and sticky homemade apple syrup. This is a great way to preserve excess apples.

Homemade apple syrup makes a perfect drizzle over pancakes and waffles. It is excellent when mixed into drinks or used in sauces. This is an easy apple syrup recipe to use up your apple glut.

Tricks: This drink is a twist of kamikaze or margarita cocktail with an aftertaste of fresh apples and a delicious match of flavours. It can also be made with tequila if you want it as salty as a margarita. You can make a faster syrup with two parts of apple juice and sugar and mix until it dissolves.

 

PAIRING: Key Lime Pie, Hazelnut Torte and Raspberry Infusion are a perfect pairing with this cocktail. The praline and the delicate white chocolate push the anise and the apple in a flavourful and delicious pairing. We highly recommend eating Hazelnut Torte while sipping the drink to add depth to the flavours.

3. Berry Hills

Fizzy, fruity, fresh

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Ingredients:

- 40ml gin

- 20ml ginger and raspberry cordial  

- 20ml lemon juice  

- 3 drops of rose water (optional)

- Top up with prosecco

Method: Shaken

Glassware: Flute

Garnish: Lemon coin discarded

 

SHAKE:

1. Combine gin, ginger, raspberry cordial, lemon juice, and rose water in a small metal shaker.

2. Fill to the top with ice cubes and close the shaker. Hard shake for 10 seconds until the shaker is frozen.

3.  Double strain into a flute.

4. Top-up with prosecco.

 

Ginger and Raspberry Cordial:

- 100g raspberry

- 40g ginger

- 300g water

- 300g white sugar

 

1. Cut the ginger into small pieces and blend until totally soft.

2. Combine raspberry, soft ginger, water, and sugar in a medium-heat pan.

3. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.

4. Mix for 8min on high heat.

5. Strain all solid parts.

6. Bottles are stored in the refrigerator for a week.

 

Tips: This Ginger and raspberry cordial is very versatile and can be used for a French 75 cocktail or as a soft drink - just top it up with some soda. This kind of drink can be prepared before your guest arrives or can help you from wasting your bubbles after Christmas. The only thing is to add the prosecco last and make sure your glassware is cold. 

 

Tricks: Don’t have a shaker? Don’t worry. You can use a protein shaker or a container with a lid or build it into a champagne glass. Make sure you use fresh citrus and ice for the best results.

 

Pairing: Lemon Posset, Key Lime Pie, Raspberry Infusion - these chocolate pairings are perfect for serving with this welcoming drink because all three chocolates enhance the cocktail flavours. Lemon Posset gives a fresh mouthwash, lemony flavour stimulating your appetite. Key Lime Pie adds a sweet lime kick to the drink while Raspberry Infusion enhances a light raspberry and ginger flavuor, balancing the drink's sweetness with dark chocolate. 

4. Banoffee Martini

Sweet, coffee, fruity

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Ingredients:

- 45ml vodka

- 15ml Kahlúa

- 20ml espresso

- 15ml banana syrup

 

Method: Shaken

Glassware: Large coupette

 

SHARE:

 

1.  Combine vodka, Kahlúa, espresso, and banana syrup in a small metal shaker.

2. Fill to the top with ice cubes and close the shaker. Hard shake for 10 seconds until the shaker is frozen.

3.  Double strain into a large coupette.

 

Clear banana syrup:

 

Banana syrup is straightforward to make, giving an authentic and full banana flavour that is not easy to find on the market. Use it in your puddings, waffles, and mocktails.

 

 - 2 bananas

 - 200g of caster sugar

 - 300ml water

 

1.       Peel the banana and cut it into small pieces.

2.       In a saucepan, combine caster sugar and water.

3.       Cook at medium heat and occasionally stir until caster sugar is dissolved.

4.       Add banana pieces and cook for 10 minutes. 

5.       Remove from heat and let it rest for 20 mins at room temperature.

6.       Strain into a bottle. 

7.       Store in the fridge for up to two weeks (but check it before throwing it away because it may last longer).

 

Tips: If you can't make the syrup, you can buy it online. If you like a daiquiri, try adding this banana syrup instead of the regular sugar syrup to add an extra tropical flavour. The syrup will taste fantastic on any Christmas puddings.

 

Tricks: Give it a nice hard shake for 15 seconds to allow the cocktail to have a nice thick foam. Make this Banoffee Martini with tequila or rum for more interesting, tasty combinations.

 

Paring: Crème Brûlée – it feels like they were born to be together. If you eat the chocolate while sipping, all the flavours will combine as a tantalising explosion, with a vanilla custard aftertaste and a hint of banana. This drink is inspired by Lily O’Brien’s Banoffee Pie; therefore, this will make the perfect marriage.

5. Raspberry Collins

Alcohol-free, spiced, fizzy, fruity

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Ingredients:

- 50ml Seedlip Spice 94

- 20ml ginger and raspberry cordial

- 25ml lemon juice

- Top up with soda water

Method: Build

Glassware: Highball

BUILD:

1. Pour the Seedlip, raspberry and ginger cordial, and lemon juice into a highball filled with ice.

2.  Gently stir until chilled.

3. Top up with soda.

4. Garnish with three raspberries.

 

Ginger and Raspberry Cordial:

- 100g raspberry

- 40g ginger

- 300g water

- 300g white sugar

 

1.       Cut the ginger into small pieces and blend until totally soft.

2.       Combine raspberry, soft ginger, water, and sugar in a medium-heat pan.

3.       Stir until the sugar is dissolved.

4.       Mix for eight mins on high heat.

5.       Strain all solid parts.

6.       Bottles can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week

 

Tips: Store the soda water in the fridge for two hours before using it for better dilution on the drink. Always use fresh lemon juice.

 

Tricks: Don’t have a jigger to measure the drinks? You can use a shot glass instead. A full glass is 50ml. A little bit under half will be 20ml.

 

Pairing: Lemon Posset, Key Lime Pie and Raspberry Infusion - all three chocolates enhance the cocktail flavours. Lemon Posset gives a fresh mouthwash, lemony flavour stimulating your appetite while Key Lime Pie adds a sweet lime kick to the drink. Raspberry Infusion enhances a light raspberry and ginger flavour, balancing the drink's sweetness with dark chocolate. 

6. Strawberry Daiquiri

Alcohol-free, fruity, sour, sweet

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Ingredients:

- 3 strawberries

- 50ml Seedlip Grove 42

- 30ml pineapple juice

- 15ml sugar syrup

- 20ml lemon juice

Method: Shake

Glassware: Coupette

SHAKE:

 

1.  Muddle the strawberries.

2.  Combine the muddle with the Seedlip, pineapple juice, sugar syrup, and lemon juice in a small metal shaker tin.

3. Fill to the top with ice cubes and close the shaker. Hard shake for 10 seconds until the shaker is frozen.

4.  Double strain into a coupette.

 

Trick: Muddle the strawberries in the shaker before adding the ingredients for a better mix of flavours. You can make syrup with strawberries for extended shelf life.

 

Tips: With this drink, you can change the Seedlip with white rum, and you will have a fantastic version for a beautiful tropical alternative. Store the glassware in the freezer for 30 minutes before making the drink.

 

Pairing: This drink pairs perfectly Key Lime Pie, Raspberry Infusion, Crème Brûlée and Hazelnut Torte to give you sweet, tropical citrus - yet warm and fuzzy - feeling.

ENDS

 

About Lily O’Brien’s 

 

Lily O'Brien's Chocolates started life as the brainchild of Mary Ann O'Brien who took her passion for chocolate on a journey of discovery, honing her chocolate-making skills among world class chefs and chocolatiers in both South Africa and Europe before starting her own mini enterprise from her Co. Kildare kitchen in 1992. With little more than two saucepans, a wooden spoon and her then toddler, Lily, acting as production manager Mary Ann began to create high quality chocolate recipes for friends and family. 

 

Named after her daughter Lily, Lily O'Brien's chocolates soon established itself as one of Ireland's best-loved chocolatiers. The passion for chocolate that first inspired Mary Ann O'Brien is still present in every aspect of the business and remains at the very core of what Lily O'Brien's do.  

 

Based in the heart of Co. Kildare, Ireland, the team at Lily O’Brien’s continue to develop mouth-watering chocolate creations using the finest quality ingredients, which are then shipped to many corners of the globe. 

 

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