12 Days of Christmas Cocktails – Cranberry Mojito

Hello Friends!  We know you’re all throwing or attending your own holiday parties. Some of these parties are large, some are small, but at most of these events you’re going to be wondering what to drink, or what to serve your guests. As you may have noticed, we have scoured the internet for some quick, easy and delicious recipes, and we found quite a few. We narrowed the selection to 12 of our favorites. We’re happy to test them for you and come up with our own twists. We know it’s hard work, but someone has to drink it.

Tonight I am writing about drink number 5 in our 12 days of Christmas cocktails series. The mojito. With added cranberry goodness. I borrowed the initial idea from the lovely ladies over at We Are Not Martha (they’re local too! Gotta support my fellow Massachusettsians). I tweaked it a bit to make it crowd-friendly and easy to make ahead of time.

I really like everything about mojitos, including the muddling and mashing of the ingredients. I do not, however, like muddling mint and lime for mojitos for a crowd of 20 people. With this you don’t have to. You can if you REALLY want to. But its not necessary.

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Lets start with the make-ahead ingredient:

Cranberry Mint Simple Syrup

  • 1 cup of cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • A good handful of mint
  • pinch of allspice (optional. I’m a big fan of the flavor combo of cranberry and allspice.)

Bring ingredients to a simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the berries look like they’re bursting and the syrup itself turns a lovely red color. Strain. Let it cool. Store in fridge. Makes about 8 oz. I used this the other night and it made around 10-12 drinks. Double the recipe for a larger crowd.

NOTE – I saved a few of the non-bursted, but still very sweet cranberries after I strained the mixture. I used them as garnish. If you’ve ever bitten into a raw cranberry, you know it’s kind of weird and not-nice tasting. These, though, are lovely after simmering in sugar. (Also, if you add them on a toothpick with some mint they sort of resemble holly berries. Festive, and not as… you know… poisonous.)

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Cranberry Mojitos

  • 2 parts Rum (or to your desired strength preference)
  • 1-2 tbsp of Cranberry Mint Simple Syrup (recipe above) per drink
  • Limes
  • 3 parts Tonic Water
  • Ice (crushed is best, in my opinion)
  • Mint for garnish

Combine Rum and simple syrup with Lime juice. Top with tonic. Add ice. Garnish with mint.

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The mint is already so infused into the flavor of the syrup, that muddling more mint (like you would in your basic mojito) makes the mint flavor a bit overwhelming. If you really like mint, give it a try!

ANOTHER NOTE!: We also used this simple syrup in a gin & tonic and a vodka & soda. Both delicious. Give it a try and let me know what you come up with in the comments!

~Renee

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