A Pina Colada contains more calories than a Big Mac and over 35 grams of sugar… while the average Long Island Iced Tea contains a whopping 463 calories – that’s the same as two doughnuts.
If you want to stick to a healthy regime without missing out on the highlight of the summer menu: the cocktail, then you’re in luck.
Head chef James Strawbridge has worked his magic on three of the nation’s most popular (and calorific) cocktails, transforming them into suave, slim line and naturally delicious versions of themselves…
LONG ISLAND ICED TEA
“For this recipe I put a healthy spin on a traditional American classic by adding cold brewed iced tea to the cocktail, instead of Cola. Not only is it refreshing, but it’s perfect for cooling down on a hot summer’s day.
It’s so easy to create a non-alcoholic version too – just add fresh peach and orange juice for even more flavour!”
SUGAR COMPARISON – PER 235G SERVING
Vs Traditional Long Island Ice Tea:
• 15ml vodka
• 15ml gin
• 15ml white rum
• 15ml orange liqueur
• 15ml tequila
• 15ml lemon juice
• 1 tsp Clarks Carob Syrup
• Iced tea – top up
• Glass of ice
• 1 spring of rosemary
• 1 orange slice
1. For a lower sugar Long Island Iced Tea prepare your own iced tea in advance by leaving 2-4 bags of classic black tea in an airtight container with 1 litre of cold water for 12 hours.
2. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and pour in all the ingredients. Shake hard to mix and chill.
3. Pour the whole drink including the ice into a highball glass and top with your traditional cold brewed iced tea.
4. Garnish with a thin slice of orange and a sprig of rosemary.
“This refreshing Cuban classic could not be a better addition to a summer’s afternoon. If you like your cocktails fiery, add some root ginger and sugar free ginger beer to give it that extra kick”.
SUGAR COMPARISON – PER 324G SERVING
Vs Traditional Mojito:
• 30ml white rum
• 2 tsp Clarks Carob Syrup
• 8-12 mint leaves
• 1/2 lime
• Soda water
• 2-3 batons of finely sliced root ginger [optional]
• Glass of crushed ice
1. Slice your lime into four segments and place in the bottom of a highball glass. Add your Clarks Carob Syrup and then use a muddler, bar spoon or rolling pin to squash the ingredients together and release the lime juice.
2. Clap the mint to bruise it and release the fresh aroma and rub around the rim of the glass then drop into the glass.
3. Use a muddler again and mix together. Pour in your rum and add in some thinly sliced root ginger. Leave for a minute whilst you crush halve of your ice.
4. Halve fill the glass with crushed iced and top with soda water
5. Garnish with a spring of fresh mint and some elderflowers if in season.
“Tequila is the spirit of 2017 – this summer’s hottest drink is the Tequila Sunrise. To give it that healthy kick, I’ve added kale into the mix – a nutritional powerhouse packed with antioxidants”.
• 60ml tequila
• 1 tsp Clarks Carob Syrup
• 50ml orange juice
• 100ml fresh kale juice – blend baby kale with a little water in a blender and strain
• 15ml grenadine
• Glass of ice cubes
• 1 red chilli
SUGAR COMPARISON – PER 230G SERVING
Vs Traditional Tequila Sunrise:
1. Fill up glass with ice and add tequila and Clarks Carob Syrup.
2. Add the orange juice and stir thoroughly. Then top with kale juice.
3. Pour the grenadine down the side of the glass so that it settles at the bottom and appears like a sunrise. Ideally some clear colour layers blending from red, orange, yellow to green hues.
4. Garnish with a kale leaf and red chilli ring on the rim.
5 quick tips from Clarks for healthier cocktails
1. Use only freshly squeezed or 100% fruit juice. Avoid using juice that contains added sugars.
2. Use sparkling water rather than tonic, soda water or sweetened soft drinks, to reduce sugar content.
3. Use a natural syrup, like Clarks Carob Syrup, instead of sugar syrup, for a lower sugar, lower calorie alternative to refined sugar.
4. Replace flavoured syrups with whole fruits.
5. Choose nutritious ingredients such as lemons and limes, ginger and vegetable juices.