It's London Cocktail Week! Green Fingers Gin Cocktail Recipe with Curly Kale, Peach & Lime

Since the heady days of the 80's when I regularly skipped Public Administration lectures in favour of the local bar's Happy Hour, I have always been partial to a cocktail or three.

No celebratory event would be complete without something iced, shaken or stirred then strained into a cute glass. I don't even mind a teeny brolly adorning it.

I love creamy cocktails, sparkly cocktails, fruity cocktails, and concoctions long and short but I have never before been faced with one containing vegetables.

This week I was challenged by Discover Kale to create a gin-based cocktail featuring, you guessed it, that amazing superfood, kale.

 Did you know:
  • Kale is an excellent source of the B vitamin, folate ( a form of folic acid) with 69µg in every 80g of cooked curly kale. Folate plays a role in normal formation of blood, and supports the immune system to function normally.
  • Kale is virtually fat free and low in calories. Four heaped tablespoons (80g) contains only 19kcals and has 2.2g of fibre
  • Kale is rich in lutein – an anti-oxidant which helps keep the eyes healthy. Kale contains 76mg lutein per kg, compared to broccoli which has 17mg. Experts recommend we should eat 6-10mg of lutein each day
  • A portion (80g) of cooked kale contains 448µg Vitamin A which plays a supporting role in maintaining normal skin and vision, and helps the immune system to function normally
  • Gram for gram kale contains 17 times more vitamin C than carrots. 
  • Raw kale is an excellent source of vitamin K containing 704.8µg per 100g.Vitamin K plays a role in normal blood clotting and plays a role in maintaining normal bones
I used raw kale in my cocktail recipe. I did a bit of research and discovered kale as a cocktail ingredient is more common that I'd anticipated. Mostly people make smoothie-type drinks with or without alcohol added.
I'm not a big fan of the texture of most smoothies so decided to use Kale like a botanical, soaking raw leaves along with slices of fresh lime in gin.

As I only wanted to make one glass of what I dubbed "Green Fingers",  I used a handful of Kale leaves, 5cl of Lincolnshire's Pin Gin and half a lime, sliced.
I shook the mix up in a lidded jam jar then left to infuse for 24 hours.
I then strained the mix into a cocktail glass, added 25cl of peach flavoured sparkling water for sweetness and to make it a softer, longer drink, then garnished with a slice of fresh lime. It was delicious! 

I loved that the kale gave the cocktail a gentle green tinge and seemed to add a freshness and depth to the drink.
I have no idea if soaking raw kale in gin allows any transfer of vitamins but since I cooked the rest of the kale I bought with Bratwurst sausages, smoked bacon, onions, potatoes and garlic in one of my favourite autumnal one pot slow cooker recipes,  I know I got my dose of healthy (and tasty) goodness regardless of the nutritional state of my cocktail!

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