I did it. I really did it.

You knew if I continued Cocktail Friday, this had to happen eventually. Jalapeño-infused vodka. A huge container of jalapeños at Trader Joe’s caught my eye and then it hit me. What could possibly go wrong with jalapeño vodka? Well, it turns out a lot of things if you don’t wear rubber gloves when chopping and seeding the jalapeños. But we won’t get into that here. Really though, if you’re working with jalapeños wear gloves. That’s all.

I had a lot of back and forth debate within my head about what kind of drink to make with the jalapeño vodka. I knew orange would be a great accent. But I was also slightly tempted to muddle some strawberries and simply splash in some soda water. In the end, the orange won out because I had a feeling the super spicy vodka would need something to cut it a bit.

And it did.

Jalapeño Orange Spritzer (makes 2):
Print this recipe!

• 6 oz. vodka
• 1 jalapeño, sliced with seeds removed
• 5 oz. orange juice
• 2 oz. soda water

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Chop one jalapeño and remove the seeds. If you’re really scared of spice, you might want to soak the sliced peppers in cold water overnight. Actually, if you’re really scared of spice, you probably won’t be making this drink. But maybe you’re feeling a little crazy or something.

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Pour 6 oz. vodka in a container and drop the jalapeño slices in. I used my Chef’n Salad Dressing Emulsifier that Chels got me. While I love making salad dressing in it, it might also be my new favorite cocktail mixer/liquor infuser. Dear Chef’n, please let me market your Chef’n Salad Dressing Emulsifier in new and innovative ways.

Let the vodka and jalapeño infuse overnight. Or if you’re scared of spicy stuff, just let it sit for a couple hours.

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When you open the container or vodka in the morning, don’t take a big whiff of it. Just trust me. Don’t. Unless you really, really need some waking up. Jalapeño vodka… the new coffee?

When you’re ready to enjoy your cocktail, fill a shaker with ice, 3 oz. of the jalapeño-infused vodka, and 2.5 oz. of orange juice. Shake well.

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Pour into a glass and top off with club soda. Add a jalapeño slice to the side. Because you’re already overdoing it anyway.

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Taste! Because it might be too spicy for you. I’m telling you, we like it HOT around here. If it’s too much to handle, add in more orange juice or club soda. Or add in more plain vodka if you’re not into watering your drinks down. I get that. Also, the first sip might make you think it’s spicier than it is. My lips burned a little. But then I drank it right down!

I also think it might be nice to make a simple syrup if you’d prefer to sweeten the drink up and tone the spiciness down.

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This cocktail was super spicy, but also really, really flavorful and just plain amazing. I’ve never had Absolut Peppar, but I imagine the jalapeño vodka was a bit similar. I’d probably even sip it slowly on the rocks. OK, maybe with a splash of water.

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We took our drinks out to the deck and sat outside for the first time this year. It was delightful!! I can definitely see us spending happy hour out here quite often this summer. The pool opens tomorrow, but I don’t think we’ll make it out there this weekend. Maybe next! That means Cocktail Friday, Saturday, and Sunday poolside.

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This was one of my favorite Cocktail Fridays yet! Minus the fact that Dateline was a re-run tonight. I hate when that happens.

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But the Bruins won and are going to the Stanley Cup, so I guess that makes up for it (I don’t really know what I’m talking about; I’m really not a big sports fan. But I do love Boston and love when our sports teams do well!).

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My bottom line is that you should make this. If you’re making it for company, be sure you warn them that it’s spicy before they take a big gulp.

Also, you should probably have some Mexican food with this. Perhaps even my Shrimp Tacos with Strawberry, Avocado, and Mango Salsa.

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Now if I could just figure out how to infuse cupcakes into vodka, I’d be all set.

Or make jalapeño cupcakes. With vodka in them. OK, it’s Friday night and it’s time for me to relax for the next three days :) Happy Memorial Day weekend!

Do you have any big plans for this weekend? Cocktails involved?

[Sues]