Since we are that much closer to Kentucky here in Kansas/Missouri, The Kentucky Derby is pretty popular here, or another reason to throw a party and imbibe. There are a few Derby parties being hosted by restaurants and bars around town. Being from Texas, and I guess too far south, I didn’t hear too much about Derby growing up, except who won the race, probably because Cinco de Mayo is more popular down there. So, in honor of Derby weekend, I thought I would try my hand at a couple of Kentucky Derby traditions, a Derby Walnut Pie and Mint Julep Cocktail.
The official drink of the Kentucky Derby is the mint julep. They sell some 100,000+ of these drinks during the 2 day event. It’s a very simple drink consisting of bourbon, sugar, and mint leaves. I am not too keen on mint flavored drinks, but I decided to give it a go. I did try the pineapple version, but that one calls for gin and not bourbon, and my first try was a fail, so I went for the traditional recipe. The recipe that I followed can be found here.
Mint Julep Cocktail
2.5oz Bourbon(I used Woodford Reserve)
Muddle the mint leaves and sugar in a julep cup. Add the bourbon. Fill past the rim with crushed ice and garnish with mint sprig, sip slowly, and enjoy!
Derby Walnut Pie
Like the mint julep, the derby pie is the official pie of the Kentucky Derby. It was first served at the infamous Melrose Inn over 60 years ago and by George Kern. The recipe that I used can be found here. I only made a slight change on this one. I thought 1 1/4 cups of chocolate chips was too much so I changed it to 1 cup. I would also suggest baking for a little over 45 minutes.
1/2 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 TBS Kentucky bourbon
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup chocolate chips, semi-sweet
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 deep dish pie crust
Pre heat oven to 350.
Mix all ingredients in bowl. Pour mixture onto pie crust and bake for 45-50 minutes. Cool before cutting and enjoy with your mint julep while wearing your most outrageous hat and cheering for your favorite horse.
Also going on this weekend are the NBA playoffs and the anticipated Floyd Mayweather vs. Marcos Maidana fight. I recommend Cinco de Mayo drinks with the Mayweather/Maidana fight :). CHEERS!!