The beet mojito created by Executive Chef Katsuya Fukushima at Café Atlàntico in Washington, D.C. It’s more delicious than curious. See the recipe below.
CAITLIN BARRETT is a member of THE NIBBLE editorial staff. She doesn’t seem to mind if the garnish on her drink can look her right in the eyes.
Updated August 2009
Page 2: Beet Mojito Recipe
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More About Exotic Cocktails
According to data from Adams Beverage Group, sales in the $49 billion dollar spirits industry are relatively flat. The predicted modest 4% growth is attributed to the constant introduction of new products and flavors from liquor companies. By analogy, bars need to constantly innovative to increase their sales—and something different is a way to get $10 and $15 and more for a cocktail.
While a Pickled Octopus Espressotini is probably not a good thing, creativity does generate tasty innovations that may sound odd at first. One example is the the Beet Mojito at Café Atlántico in Washington, D.C. Executive Chef Katsuya Fukushima creates new excitement (and a “mo-beet-to”) by mixing red beet purée into the classic Cuban rum drink. It’s not as strange as it sounds: although a vegetable, beets have a very high sugar content, so it’s not dissimilar to using passionfruit purée, a fruit with a relatively low sugar content. If this concept makes your heart beet, we’ve included the recipe below
We at THE NIBBLE like to separate surf and slurp: we enjoy eating skewers of ahi tuna along with our sake martini, but don’t want to stir the martini with the tuna: It’s an attractive presentation, but a culinary gimmick that doesn’t do a service to either food. While we won’t be dropping cubed foie gras into a Champagne cocktail anytime soon, we share some of our house drinks with you—along with Chef Fukushima’s Beet Mojito. If you’re thirsty, here’s the recipe.
Beet Mojito Recipe
While our article gets snarky on the topic of unusual cocktails, this one is quite delicious.
- 5 lime wedges
- 15 small mint leaves
- 1 to 11/2 tablespoons sugar
- Ice cubes
- 1/4 cup white rum
- 1 to 11/2 tablespoons beet purée*
- 1 or 2 splashes of lemon-lime soda, such as Sprite
- Sugar cane stick*, for garnish (optional, available at Asian and some Latino
- Make beet purée. Place two large unpeeled beets in a pot with just enough cold water to cover them. Bring to a boil and cook until they are easily pierced with a fork. Discard the cooking liquid and allow the beets to cool before peeling, then chop beets coarsely and place in a blender to purée with just enough water to facilitate the process. Blend until smooth. Place in a squeeze bottle or plastic container and refrigerate until ready to use. This will make about 1 cup purée, the remainder of which may be stored in the freezer.
- In a highball glass or tall tumbler, mix the limes, mint and sugar until the ingredients are well crushed and combined.
- Fill the glass with ice and add the rum and red beet purée. Cover and shake well (or stir vigorously). Fill the rest of the glass with the lemon-lime soda.
- Garnish with a fresh sugar cane stick (optional) and serve immediately.
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