The local strawberries are out so I picked some up to make the next vital ingredient in the Ruby Rocket – Strawberry Simple Syrup. Since simple is the operative word here I will just give you a brief description of what goes into it. I used 2 quarts of strawberries hulled and halved. They were put into a saucepan with 4 cups of water and brought to a boil, then simmered for 10 minutes. The strawberries will have lost most of their color and look light pink. I used a small colander to drain the liquid into another saucepan. Do not squeeze the berries in the strainer or your syrup will be cloudy. Return the liquid to the stove and add 2 cups of sugar. Heat until the sugar is dissolved, skim off the foam. I then put the syrup into a couple of canning bottles and screwed on the caps. Once it had cooled down I put it into the refrigerator. The sugar content allows this to keep for quite a long time.
I pulled all of the ingredients together for the now famous drink. The vodka had been infusing for 8 days. In a martini shaker filled with ice I added the vodka, the simple syrup and a healthy squeeze of lime. Shake, shake, shake, pour. This can be made in proportions that combine the flavors in any way you want – tart or sweet. You may need to make a few before you get exactly the taste you want. Mine was maybe a little bit sweeter than I wanted but it tasted like the freshest strawberry rhubarb combo.
There you have it, the perfect Ruby Rocket. Too much work? Check out the Blue Rock Cafe if you are in Shelburne Falls, MA – they may have it. If not they will certainly have some other fabulous infused vodka martini.