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Valentine Love Potions

February 13, 2018

Romantic occasions and champagne go hand-in-hand, but what if you don’t drink alcohol? Mocktails are the perfect solution! If you’re planning an amorous Valentine’s Day dinner, make a cherry or pomegranate-flavored “love potion.” Christen the non-alcoholic beverage with your favorite number, such as Love Potion #9, and you’ve got yourself a memorable mocktail that your Valentine will love!

Pomegranate and cherry are the perfect flavors for a Valentine’s Day mocktail. Not only are they delicious, but they also have romantic mythology. In Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, pomegranates are symbols of fertility and abundance. And many believe that cherries are a natural aphrodisiac. Besides their mystical properties, pomegranates and cherries are full of nutrients that can improve your health.

One pomegranate contains 48 percent of your daily need of vitamin C, which can boost a body’s immune system. Pomegranates also have vitamin K, folate, and potassium. Cherries are also a great source of vitamin C, as well as vitamin A and fiber. And studies have found that cherry juice can help an adult suffering with insomnia and reduce a person’s risk of colon cancer.

Are you ready to toast to your love with a delicious and healthy drink? Try one of the tasty “love potions” listed below.

Pomegranate Pink Lady

(Recipe from Mother Nature Network)

 Ingredients

  • 1 medium-sized pomegranate, about 1/2 cup of juice
  • Juice of half a lime
  • 4 tablespoons of simple syrup
  • 1 tray of ice cubes, divided equally
  • 2 ounces of club soda
  • Orange wedges (for garnish)
  • Pomegranate seeds (for garnish)

 Directions

  1. Quarter pomegranate over a ceramic bowl and remove white pulp. Pour contents into a blender, and pulse for about 30 seconds.
  2. Combine pomegranate juice, lime, simple syrup, and ice cubes in a glass jar with sealable lid.
  3. Seal and shake well. Strain contents through a sieve into two ice-filled tumblers, and top each glass with club soda.
  4. Add lime wedges and pomegranate seeds to garnish. This recipe should yield two drinks.

Roasted Cherry Soda

(Recipe from Tending the Table)

 Ingredients

  • 1 cup of cherries, cut in half and pitted & a couple of whole cherries to garnish
  • 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, divided
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 tablespoon of loose leaf smoky black tea (such as keemum, Lapsang Souchong, or Russian Caravan)
  • 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 8 ounces of soda water

 Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment.
  2. Slice the vanilla bean in half lengthwise. Using the back of a small knife, scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean pod and into a bowl. Add the vanilla bean pod, the cherries, and one tablespoon of the maple syrup. Toss to coat the cherries. Transfer to the baking sheet and roast in the oven for five to ten minutes, until soft and bubbling. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, steep the tea in 1/4 cup of boiling water for 5 minutes. Strain and set aside.
  4. Place the cherries and any syrup left on the baking sheet into a blender and pulse a few times until a chunky puree forms. Strain the cherry puree through a fine mesh strainer into a jar. Add three tablespoons of the steeped tea, the one tablespoon of lemon juice, and the remaining 1 tablespoon of maple syrup. Stir to combine.
  5. This drink yields two servings, so divide the syrup between two glasses. Top each glass with ice and 4 ounces of soda water. Garnish with a couple of cherries. 

Bonus. Looking for other cherry-based recipes for Valentine’s Day? How about bite-sized cherry pies? They’re cute and would make a great addition to any Valentine’s Day party. You can find the Bite-Sized Cherry Pie recipe here.

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