Monday, June 10, 2013

Champagne Punch

My superstar husband, who recently completed a dual-degree graduate program at MIT, graduated this weekend, and our in-laws were in town to help celebrate.  I love an excuse to serve champagne, so we began graduation day with my husband's favorite donuts and a pitcher of this lovely Champagne Punch (originally created for a Memorial Day cookout upon realizing I had not properly planned ahead and needed a last-minute drink to contribute).

It's crisp and refreshing, and it must be good for you, as there's fruit in it (that's how it works, right?).  Great for brunch, I bet it would be a hit at summer picnics or at bridal or baby showers. For a non-alcoholic version, I think Ginger Ale or Club Soda would substitute nicely for champagne.  For whatever the occasion, here's to celebrating!
1 59oz bottle of orange juice 
(I use Tropicana Pure Premium with No Pulp)
1 pint (2 cups) strawberries, frozen
~1/2 cup sliced peaches, frozen 
1/4 cup triple sec
(I use Cointreau)
1 bottle sparkling wine 
(I use Mionetto's IL Prosecco, very good yet affordable so it's good for mixing)
Frozen raspberries for garnish, optional

Add frozen strawberries and peaches into a blender. Pour some orange juice over the fruit to ease blending (I poured until the blender was about half full). 

Blend until fruit is completely pureed, stirring periodically if needed (I have a wimpy blender so I stir every couple minutes to ensure that everything gets pureed).

Pour the mixture into a pitcher. Stir in the triple sec and remaining orange juice until well combined. 

(If preparing in advance, stop here and store the fruit mixture in the refrigerator. Only add the sparkling wine when  ready to serve.)

Top off with the bottle of sparkling wine, stirring gently to combine.

Serve immediately, garnishing each glass with a couple frozen raspberries if desired.

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