July 4th is the perfect time to get exceedingly patriotic. And I do. I've made more all-American meals for clients than I can count, baked more red-white-and-blue cakes and pastries and tarts than I care to remember. And the 4th of July -- just an ordinary day for the Italians in Italy -- was always a favorite holiday of mine in Rome. I once gave myself an American flag pedicure for the occasion! Okay, maybe that was going a bit overboard. But it was the day we Americans could declare our American-ness, our patriotism, and our love for making fun of our beloved British friends. We got together for cookouts and pool parties, and ate hot dogs and hamburgers of our own making. And the drinks. Always, said the Italians, we knew how to make the most delicious cocktails. Of course, the mojito isn't exactly American. But anything and red (strawberries, raspberries), white (rum), and blue (blueberries) -- well, that qualifies. So here we have a "patriotic" berry mojito that's perfect for sharing with friends on July 4th, and throughout the heat of summer. The lime and fresh mint give the drink a zing and a refreshing bite that cut through the sugar and sweetness of the berries. Replace the rum with cachaça or vodka for a berry caipirinha or caipiroska, respectively -- a nod to the World Cup host country and a perfect drink to enjoy while viewing this exciting soccer tournament, live from Brazil.
Enjoy, and HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!