So, for the last 3 years, I've been having an Anti-Valentine's Day Party (maybe it's longer). It's for my single friends only. I like how some of my married friends get upset that they don't get an invite. We singleton's get excluded from so much during the year, it's only fair that we get a day. One day, just for us! Weee! Suck it.
It's unofficially Single Awareness Day (SAD), but we don't sit around crying into our cocktail glasses. I hear the marrieds, "Really?" Yea. Really. We actually rejoice and celebrate that we haven't succumbed to the social pressures of settling. Now, non-singletons, I don't want your hate mail. I think I can speak for my friends as well as myself to say, "to each her (or his) own!"
I'm glad the non-singletons have found someone. But I think my group along with a lot of other single women out there, aren't feeling the pressures from society to marry as much as they used to. There still seems to be some sort of social faux-pas to ("Still?") be a woman, unwed in your thirties. Like, we are all these pathetic old maids who have a pack of cats (and seriously, what the hell is wrong with having cats?! They are super cute, independent, love-able creatures). Although, the generous income gap is still regrettable an issue between the sexes. Women aren't relying on men as much as they used to. We can live on our own, pay our bills, own businesses and (:::gasp:::) survive! There's a strange strength you feel when doing things on your own, that a lot of people miss out on. I know the majority of the masses still jump from one relationship to the next. Not being able to function on a basic life level-without that additional income or having that emotional assistance with someone to assist you through life. I find it really sad. Because you learn SO much about yourself when you do it on your own. All on your own. I have had relationships, but never felt the desperate yearn of NEEDING someone. No one should! I believe, people should be with people because they enhance their healthy life. Not because they are dependent on them for some reason, or another. The alternative is to choose to be alone, and that should be allowed too. Yea, "allowed". That's kinda how it feels. It continues to baffle me.
So, the party. I made an amazing cheese plate, mini pot pies, mini lava cakes (that were extra lava-ey), chocolate pudding, and a super fun, "Smoking" Bloody Valentine Arrival Cocktail. I wanted an, "ooh!" and an "ahh!" from guests when they arrived. Dry Ice would do the trick! And shit. It was pretty tasty too! Before explaining the drink......
DO NOT INGEST DRY ICE!!! DO NOT TOUCH DRY ICE!!!
Seriously, you will die (or something equally horrible). It is safe to drink something that has dry ice IN it, but not the ice itself. Seriously. Don't. You might have to call around, but it is pretty easy to get, especially if you plan accordingly. I would give yourself at least a week to track some down. Google Search it and can find it in a lot of grocery stores, but it usually only comes on certain days or needs to be ordered specially. It needs to stay super cold (a lot colder than your typical ice), and will melt very quickly. I picked mine up about 20 minutes before the party, but an hour or two would be fine. It is actually pretty inexpensive too. I thought it would be super expensive, but I paid only $3.14 a pound.
Servings: 4 Singletons
Time: 5 minutes, plus an additional 20 mins. for baby hearts (hehe)
1/2 Cup FRESH Raspberries-Rinsed
1/8 Cup Raw Granulated Sugar
Vodka (two shots PER DRINK)
Carbonated Blood Orange Soda (I got mine from Trader Joe's)
1 Blood Orange
Other Not "Normal" Kitchen Equipment:
Fine Mesh Strainer
Food Processor (you should own this, but if not-Get One!)
1/2 lb. Dry Ice
The Bloody Baby Hearts-I made this while food prepping for the party. It can be made early and just stored in the fridge. Puree the raspberries until jam-like in the food processor. Dump puree into the strainer (over small fry pan) and push through the strainer to de-seed. I used a small rubber spatula. I'm not gonna lie, this was a pain in the ass. You have to push through, scrap the sides and bottom. Then, do it over and over again, until only seeds sit in the strainer. I kind of stirred it too. It's not a difficult step, just kind of time consuming, but totally worth it. Once done, toss the seeds out and turn the heat onto Med, Med-Low making sure to not burn the raspberry puree. Seriously, you slaved a bit to get it de-seeded. Don't burn that precious (My Precious) baby heart puree! Stir in the granulated sugar and continue to stir. It took about 12 minutes of stirring and making sure the mix didn't burn to thicken to a dark, almost "gelatinous" gel. Pour into a small glass container, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Regardless of when it's made, it should be chilled at least an hour.
Get 4 martini glasses. Measure approximately two shots (or less if you're a wussy) of vodka into each glass (no need to chill if using dry ice). Top with Blood Orange Soda, and a squeeze of FRESH blood orange juice in each. Rim glass with discarded juiced oranges on the lip of the glasses. Garnish with slice of Blood Orange. Divide bloody heart mix into the glasses and then get dry ice out of freezer. Use hammer, safety glasses and screwdriver to cut a small chunk for each glass. Use tongs to place in glass (DO NOT TOUCH THE ICE!). And serve to get the "ooh" and "ahh" reaction!
Again, because of the dumdums, DO NOT EAT THE ICE! DO NOT TOUCH THE ICE! It will freeze on the bottom of your glass and should not be consumed or touched. If worried, you can wait until the ice is no longer smoking and is dissolved, but it's safe to drink your cocktail.