Classic French Cocktails: Kir Pêche
When I lived in France, dinners among friends would always begin with an apéritif, a small pre-dinner drink. It's a fun custom that gets the meal started off right. ;) My very favorite apéritif to this day is a classic French cocktail, but with a subtle twist: the Kir Pêche. A traditional kir (pronounced "keer") consists of dry white wine and crème de cassis, a liqueur made from blackcurrants. It's a lovely pale blush color, with a delicate berry-like flavor. A kir pêche is instead made with crème de pêche, or peach liqueur. While it doesn't impart the same pinkish hue, I just adore the light, sweet flavor of peach mingling subtly with a nice tart white wine. Another variation on the classic kir is a Kir Royale, which is made with champagne. I love both – it all just depends on whether you're in the mood for bubbles! You can easily adapt this recipe for a kir pêche royale by replacing the white wine with champagne. Easy! Kir Pêche Ingredients 1 part crème de pêche (peach liqueur) 4 parts dry white wine 1.) First, pour in the crème de pêche; then the white wine. Stir gently to mix. 2.) Serve chilled in a champagne flutes. If you're not a discerning drinker, any white will work. However, if you want a more proper, traditional kir, try varieties like Riesling, Gewürtztraminer, Chardonnay, or Sauvignon Blanc. If you like your wine a little sweeter, try a Muscadet. And one other note – some people disagree on the proportions of liqueur to wine. I like a 5:1 ratio. Some experts insist on 9:1, but to me, that just tastes like white wine. So a little experimenting is good! :) I hope you enjoy this lovely, refreshing cocktail, perfect for summer dinner parties. If you give it a try, I'd love to hear your thoughts on it. :D
PRINT PREP TIME 30 mins COOK TIME 10 mins Not for the weak of heart, this chocolate and peanut butter torte is a peanut-butter lover's dream. Keep the ice-cold milk nearby! Recipe source: Slightly adapted from Annie's Eats Serves: 16 servings INGREDIENTS For crust: 1 package (approximately 36) Oreo Cookies, finely crushed 6 teaspoons melted butter ¼ teaspoon salt For filling: 2 cups heavy/whipping cream 1 and ½ cups powdered/confectioners' sugar, divided 1 and ½ cups peanut butter 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature 2 Tablespoons milk ½ cup peanut butter chips (or chocolate chips) For topping: 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped ½ cup heavy cream Chopped peanuts, or chopped peanut butter cups, for garnish INSTRUCTIONS Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Butter a 9-inch springform pan, and set aside. Finely process Oreo Cookies using a food processor or by hand with a rolling pin. Pour crumbs into a small bowl, and add salt. Melt butter, and pour over crushed cookies. Stir with a fork until completely moistened. Evenly press crumb mixture into pan, on bottom and up sides. Place in freezer for 10 minutes. Bake for 10 minutes. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack. Filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, beat heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add ½ cup of confectioners' sugar, and beat until stiff peaks form. Transfer whipped cream into a different bowl, and place in refrigerator until needed. Use the same bowl, but replace whisk with the paddle attachment. Beat together cream cheese and remaining 1 cup of confectioners' sugar until smooth. Add peanut butter and milk, and beat until completely combined. Scrape sides as needed. Remove bowl from mixer. Add about ¼ of the whipped cream to the peanut butter mixture. Use a spatula to fold the cream into the peanut butter to lighten the mixture. Do not stir vigorously, carefully fold the mixture so you don't deflate the whipped cream. Add the remaining cream in two batches, using the same folding method, until all of the whipped cream is completely incorporated. Carefully add the peanut butter chips and gently stir to combine. Pour peanut butter mousse into the cookie shell, and smooth top. Refrigerate until filling is firm, about 30 minutes. Then, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate an additional 4-24 hours before serving. For topping: Heat cream in a glass bowl in the microwave for 60-90 seconds, until cream is steaming hot but not boiling. Using a wire whisk, stir chopped chocolate into the cream. Stir gently until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Set aside to thicken. Once mixture is thickened, carefully spread over top of torte. Garnish with chopped peanuts or chopped peanut butter cup candies, as desired. Refrigerate a few moments more until chocolate topping begins to harden. Enjoy!