The other night my husband and I went out to dinner with two other couples. One of the guys is married to a girl from Indonesia. We heard extensively about their travels to this exotic part of the world with awe and interest. And yes, this is where lemongrass vodka martini recipe comes into play.
Two American guys walk into a bar…
The story has to do with a couple of American guys enjoying this libation at a popular hotel bar. The martini was infused lemongrass.
The food blogger in me was instantly delighted. “I need to make one of those” I told my husband. So here I am trying to concoct a lemongrass vodka martini recipe. I’ll be totally honest here, I had to consult with my husband. When it comes to drinks he is a much better bartender than I am. We all have our strengths, right?
After much debate, he made a lemongrass infused simple syrup. Fortunately there is an Asian market near our house that sells it. Having the simple syrup means lemongrass cocktails anytime we please.
By the way, lemongrass is a key ingredient in Thai, Vietnamese, and Cambodian cuisine.
I fell in love with it last year when my family and I visited Southeast Asia. And yes, I promise to have more recipes that use this ingredient.
What is lemongrass?
Lemongrass looks a little bit like scallions, except that the stalks are a yellow green color. Its flavor and aroma are lemony. So what are the lemongrass uses? A lot! It is extremely versatile. Use it for soups, stews, and stir fries. You need this herb in your arsenal. By the way if you have difficulty finding it fresh, you can buy it in paste form in the produce section of your grocery store. It s also sold pickled in the Asian section of your grocery store.
The collage above shows you how to properly trim lemongrass. First, you need to cut the end with a sharp knife. This is the part directly above the ring that sits above the root mass. Next trim the top as well. Remove a couple of layers from the stalk. Rinse. Finally trim from the bottom.
Here are some common preparation techniques for lemongrass.
- You can leave the stalk whole and beat it gently with a kitchen mallet to release the oils in the stalks and to add to soups, or in this case infuse a simple syrup with lemongrass flavor as shown above and below. You want to remove the stalks from the soup when you are ready to serve. In the case of the simple syrup you can remove and strain it after it soaks for a few days.
- If you are making a stir fry dish with lemongrass you can thinly slice the lemongrass stalk into small rings along the width and toss them in the stir fry dish.
- If you are going to make a curry paste with lemongrass you can finely mince it and add to your curry paste mixture.
Here I have gently crushed the lemongrass along the length with my handy kitchen mallet and submerged it into the simple syrup.
Just to let you know a little bit about lemongrass:
Lemongrass is a perennial herb. It is cultivated in India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand. For centuries, it was used make soups, curries, and also for medicinal purposes. Lemongrass grows in clumps, up to 6′ wide and 3′ high.
Now I really need to let my dinner companions know that the drink from their travels is now on my blog. Maybe they’ll make it, and remember their tropical paradise as they savor their first sip.
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Lemongrass vodka martini recipe
Anew twist on an old favorite. Lemongrass vodka martini makes a dynamite cocktail The lovely lemony flavor of lemongrass shines through. The result is a lovey libation that is perfect for any occasion.
- 2 oz vodka
- 3 tsp simple syrup infused with lemongrass
- 1 tsp dry vermouth
Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker full of ice.
Shake for 30 seconds.
Pour into martini glasses.
The recipe for lemongrass infused simple syrup is below.
Lemongrass Infused Simple Syrup
Here is an easy way to make lemongrass simple syrup and store it in your refrigerator for cocktails.
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 5 stalks lemongrass
Add sugar and water to saucepan and heat until all the sugar is dissolved. Pour the liquid in a glass jar for storage.
Trim the ends off of 5 stalks of lemongrass and discard. Use the middle section of lemongrass and gently break up with a kitchen mallet.
Place the mashed stalks of lemongrass in the warm simple syrup and leave to infuse for 3-4 days. Refrigerate after the liquid has cooled.
Remove the lemongrass stalks from the liquid and pour through a strainer. This mixture can be stored in the refrigerator for several months.