Simple summer cocktails

There is nothing more refreshing than a cocktail to cool you off on those hot summer evenings.

Cocktail (photo credit: Courtesy)
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Summer evenings make me think of savoring cool drinks on the veranda.  They make me think of them even though I’m usually too busy to indulge. But just in case the opportunity arises, I like to be prepared. Here are some new summertime specials.
Peach Mojitos
3 cups peeled and chopped peaches
1 cup fresh lime juice (the bottled juice really doesn’t work as well here)
¾ cup sugar
½ cup mint leaves
2 cups rum
4 cups chilled club soda
Crushed ice (optional)
Purée peaches in a blender or food processor. 
In a large pitcher, stir together, lime juice, sugar and mint leaves, mashing slightly. Stir in peach purée and rum. Add club soda and serve over crushed ice or ice cubes.
Cranberry-Pineapple Punch
This non-alcoholic treat is enough for all the kids in the neighborhood.
2 quarts cranberry juice
3 quarts pineapple juice
1 quart orange juice
1-1/2 cups lemon juice
2 quarts lemon-lime soda (preferably diet)
In a large bowl filled with ice, stir together all ingredients.  Allow to chill and serve immediately.
Summertime Brandy Alexander
Makes about 4 drinks
A traditional Brandy Alexander is made with brandy, chocolate liqueur and cream.  This treat uses ice cream and chocolate syrup for a refreshing summer treat.
¼ cup cold brewed coffee
2 pints coffee, chocolate or vanilla ice cream
½ cup brandy
½ cup chocolate syrup
In a food processor or blender, purée all ingredients until smooth. Pour into glasses and garnish with whipped cream.
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