The importance of scent throughout history cannot be denied. The pomander was a ball filled with perfume and worn from the Middle Ages on as a form of protection against sickness and death in the days before modern hygiene and sanitation.
By the 18th century a pomander was most often an orange studded with cloves used during the holidays to add a pleasant fragrance to the home. This iconic scent ball is the inspiration for our Tis the Season fragrance.
I think you will really enjoy this combination in a beverage. It certainly has a nostalgic, retro cocktail flavor to it that seems perfect to serve as we reminisce during this festive season. Cold marinated shrimp is a perfect pairing. You can throw this together quickly with a prepared dressing or make your own with fresh lemon juice and olive oil seasoned with salt, pepper and basil. I added black olives, red onion and parsley. Serve in a pretty clear bowl. How about a plate of deviled eggs? Deviled eggs thankfully have made a comeback and are so good with cold cocktails.
A great family project is to make pomander as a table decoration and a party favor for your guests to take home. Pierce the skin of an orange with a sharp object like an ice pick where you want the cloves to be. Then let the kids get involved by studding the orange with whole cloves. Tie up with a pretty ribbon and it will be enjoyed well in to the New Year. Line them up down the center of your table on top of Milkhouse cream jars filled with whole cloves.
- 2 ounces gin
- 1 ounce clove simple syrup
- ½ ounce fresh lemon juice
- ½ ounce fresh orange juice
- Dash bitters
- Sugar and ground cloves for rimming the glass
- To make the clove simple syrup; mix ½ cup water and ½ cup sugar in a small saucepan. Add 4 whole cloves and a 1” X 4” piece of orange zest. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Strain out cloves and orange. Cover and refrigerate syrup.
- Place sugar and ground cloves in a shallow dish. Rub the rim of a cocktail glass with a slice of orange. Turn rim of glass in sugar mixture to coat. Chill.
- Fill a cocktail shaker half full of ice. Pour the gin, simple syrup, lemon juice, orange juice and bitters over the ice. Shake until very cold. Strain into chilled glass. Garnish with orange slice studded with a couple of whole cloves if desired.
I hope you are enjoying this season with loved ones!