Friday, April 29, 2011

Super Brandy Alexander




I do love gadgets – back when I had TV, whenever an infomercial came on, I’d be reaching for the phone before you could blink. (Where’s my credit card? So what if I don’t have a boat, I *need* that special boat cleaner!) Fortunately, I have a small kitchen, so I’ve quit buying just any old gimmick-y doo dad – but when I found a bunch of late 60s / early 70s kitchen gadgets at an estate sale (for MY price of $1 each!) I had to have them all. And the best of the bunch was the Popeil Brothers’ 1974 Whip-O-Matic, with Planetary Action. (Never mind that we have no idea what that is, it sounds So Good!)

This beauty came complete in its original box, with instructions and recipes! I read with glee that the Whip-O-Matic was perfect for making meringue, scrambled eggs “deluxe”, batter for crepes, (naturally) whipped cream, salad dressing, chocolate milk and, lo and behold, my favorite after-dinner drink: the Brandy Alexander.

Not just any Brandy Alexander, though. There were plenty of recipes for those in ordinary cocktail guides. (Including one called Alexander’s Sister Cocktail in the definitive Savoy Cocktail Book (1930) that features Crème de Menthe and bears this warning: “Ladies are advised to avoid this Cocktail as often as possible.”) This one, using the revolutionary Planetary Action so lovingly touted by the Popeil Brothers (this must have JUST pre-dated their split and the creation of brother Ron Popeil’s “RonCo”) was not ordinary but Super.

I will say that it was in fact super! But that comes as little surprise since I already knew I loved the drink. One issue I had was that the ice, though crushed, was NOT dissolving, and despite the completely safe, non-electric, rubber-tractioned bottom, I poured the mixture through a strainer just to remove the few big ice chunks left. The other issue is with the quantity – I think for two drinks, you really need to double the recipe, and even then they are dainty in size, though just right in taste. Whip one up (or use a regular cocktail shaker with strainer if you lack your own Whip-O-Matic) tonight and see for yourself!

NOTE: I just discovered that Tupperware makes a mighty similar item, their “Whip ‘n Prep Chef” which you can buy from my dear friend Karen Finlay, right here!


Super Brandy Alexander

1 oz. Brandy
1 oz. Crème de Cacao
1 oz. cream
6 oz. shaved or finely crushed ice

Whip until ice dissolves. Pour into cold cocktail glasses and top with groud nutmeg. Makes 2 generous size drinks.

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