What will they think of next? (June edition)

Having spent most of my life in daily journalism, I had it drilled into my skull for decades that press releases should rarely be used verbatim because they're designed to push a particular product or point of view and, thus, are suspect.

This is one of those rare occasions when a press release seems so full of useful and intefresting information, I'm passing it along as this month's edition of "What will they think of next?"

It's from the folks at Knob Creek Bourbon, who have come up with a lineup of summer recipes for food and drink, beginning with a trio of classic cocktails that are beginning to undergo a resurgence among young consumers.

Obviously, you don't have to use the Knob Creek brand in the recipes, but they'd be pleased if you do.

Whiskey Sour
1 ½ ounces bourbon
½ ounce fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon superfine sugar
1 orange slice
1 maraschino cherry

In a shaker half-filled with ice cubes, combine the bourbon, lemon juice and sugar. Shake well and strain into a whiskey sour glass. Garnish with the orange slice and cherry.

Old Fashioned
½ orange slice
1 maraschino cherry, stem removed
3 dashes bitters
1 teaspoon water
½ teaspoon superfine sugar
1 ½ ounces bourbon

In an old fashioned-glass, combine the orange slice, cherry, bitters, water and sugar. Using the back of a teaspoon, muddle the ingredients, dissolving the sugar and mashing up the fruit somewhat. Fill the glass with ice cubes, add the bourbon and stir gently.

Bourbon Sidecar
1 ounce bourbon
½ ounce triple sec
½ ounce lemon juice

Combine all ingredients with crushed ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake well. Strain into chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a lemon wedge.


Bourbon & Brown Sugar Cocktail Sausages

3 lbs. cocktail sausages
2 lbs. sliced bacon
2 ½ lbs. brown sugar
2 ½ oz. bourbon

Wrap cocktail sausages with a small piece of bacon and skewer with a toothpick. Place in a crock pot and cover with brown sugar. Cook on low setting for four hours until sugar melts. Add bourbon and continue to simmer for one to two more hours.
Serve warm from the crock pot.

Bourbon Bleu Cheese Dip

6 oz. quality bleu cheese (Maytag, Roquefort, etc.)
3 oz. package cream cheese
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 tbsp. bourbon
1 cup whipping cream, well chilled
1 cup walnut halves, toasted*
Fresh pear and apple slices

Place the cheeses and butter in the food processor. Process until well blended and fluffy. Pour in the bourbon and process to blend well. Whip the cream until stiff. Stir a large spoonful of whipped cream into the cheese mixture to lighten the mixture, and then fold in the remaining cream. Spoon the mousse onto a serving plate and arrange the toasted walnuts on top. Spread onto the pear and apple slices. Serve as an appetizer or as the cheese course following the meal.

Bourbon Barbecue Sauce
2 cups ketchup
4 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
4 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tsp. dry mustard
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
4 tbsp. cider vinegar
¾ cup bourbon

Combine ingredients and enjoy.

Bourbon Barbecued Shrimp

2 lbs. large (16 to 20 count) raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tsp. fine sea salt
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
The Sauce:
1 stick butter
2 cups finely chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup bourbon
1 cup bottled chili sauce
2 tbsp. cider vinegar
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
½ cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tbsp. sea salt

Make the barbecue sauce according to the directions below. This may be done a day ahead. Cool the sauce, cover and chill. Reheat before the shrimp is added to it. Place the shrimp in a gallon-sized plastic bag. Add the salt and peppers and toss to coat well.

Heat the oil over high heat in a large skillet. Sauté the shrimp, turning once for about 5 minutes or until pink and lightly browned. Add to the hot barbecue sauce. Allow to sit for a few minutes and serve with crusty bread.

To make the barbecue sauce: melt the butter and sauté the onions and garlic for 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring often.

Bourbon Marinated Flank Steak

1 large flank steak (approximately 2 lbs.)
½ cup light soy sauce
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 medium onions, sliced
3 large cloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsp. minced fresh ginger root
2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
¼ tsp. hot pepper sauce
½ cup Knob Creek® Bourbon

Trim all visible fat from the flank steak. In a heavy duty, gallon-size plastic bag with a zip top, mix together all of the marinade ingredients. Add steak. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours or as long as 24 hours.

Cook on hot grill for 8 minutes on the first side and 5 minutes on the second side for a medium-rare steak. Increase the cooking time according to taste. To serve, cut across the grain into 1-inch wide strips. Serves 4-6.

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