I have another confession to make.
Of all the things Sex and the City brought into the pop-culture spotlight (Manolo, anyone?), Cosmopolitan Martinis would have to be near the top of my list.
I have a few friends that share my love of 'girly' drinks, and we get together once a month or so for "Cosmo Night." While we don't always drink cosmos, we do drink something fruity and alcohol laden (unless someone is 'expecting' - then we switch to fruit smoothies in a show of support), and we always have a copy of Cosmopolitan magazine to read from. Cosmo magazine is 1000% more enjoyable when read aloud. With alcohol. With 5 women pantomiming the '65 hot new sex tricks' and wondering what level of yoga you need to achieve to actually use the tips.
This month, as I read the Daring Bakers assignment of an "Opera Cake," I excitedly pondered my flavor options. I wanted something light and fruity. I also was trying to think of the best occasion to bring these to, trying to pawn off some calories. We had a cosmo night planned for memorial day weekend, and I figured, with the upcoming movie, what better a theme than 'cosmo?'
For the uninitiated, our tried and true cosmopolitan martini recipe is as follows:
Cosmo MartiniI decided my primary flavors would be cranberry and lime. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. Everywhere I looked, there were flavor extracts for every fruit under the sun, except cranberry. In desperation, I ended up settling for a bottle of heavily concentrated cranberry. The label calls for 1 part concentrate to 5 parts water, so I figured this was as close to 'extract' as I was going to get. I was a little scared of the potency since most extracts are alcohol based and this was pure cranberry, so I used 1 teaspoon of the concentrate in the syrup. For the lime, I added 1 limes worth of zest to the buttercream. Both added subtle but not overpowering flavors to the cake.
4 parts Vodka
2 parts Triple Sec
2 parts Cranberry Juice
1 part Lime Fresh Juice
Shake all four ingredients with ice, serve.
For presentation, I like anything miniature or 'single serving.' It makes you feel a little better when you eat 3 of them over the span of a day. But with the towering layers the recipe called for, I feared anything too small would turn into the leaning tower of opera cake.
My largest round biscuit cutter fit the bill, and with 10x15 inch pans, I got 6 rounds from each layer. Assemble was pretty straightforward, though I was a little worried about adding too much syrup and causing the whole thing to crumble.The cakes were a big hit, and rather than do the 'ladylike' thing of plates and such (who wants to do the dishes anyhow?) we just grabbed forks and dug in. 7 sets of 2 thumbs up all