Have you ever met a person and immediately felt like you’ve known each other for ages? That’s exactly what happened when I met my dear, sweet friend, Krystal. She is the kind of person that just immediately makes you feel comfortable. Granted, we had chatted online before but it was still just like hanging out with an old friend when we finally met in person at the Foodbuzz festival in November. Since she is also a SoCal girl, it luckily wasn’t the last time we got to hangout “in real life”. Just a few weeks before I left for China we got to meet up again and of course we had a blast (what’s not fun about sharing tacos then rounding out the evening with a trip to Ghiradelli to share a peanut butter sundae??).
Krystal and her husband, Eric (who I also got to meet, just as awesome and friendly as his lovely wife), are expecting their first child. They’ve decided to go “Team Green” and wait until the baby, who they lovingly call Cookie, is born to find out the gender. I just think that is awesome. Like the ultimate surprise.
Now here is the part where I have to make a little confession. When Krystal and I were together last month she mentioned off hand that our friend Joelen has asked Krystal if she could host a virtual shower in honor of Cookie. Knowing that I was getting ready to be living in a hotel for the next month or so I decided to cheat and make something before I left. Then I received the email from Joelen and she wanted to celebrate Krystal and Eric’s culture by asking us to share Filipino or Cuban treats for the virtual shower. What I had made didn’t really fit the theme, so I really had to put on my thinking cap.
Not having access to a full kitchen meant I needed to get creative. I finally decided that easiest thing to make would be a beverage. I googled Cuban beverages and one of the first results was Mojito
. Absolutely perfect, I thought! Even supports the Team Green colors! I just tweaked it a little to make it nonalcoholic so it would be baby shower friendly. Thus was born the “Faux”-jito. From there I just had to find the ingredients.
We are in Hong Kong right now to reset Jesse’s visa and it was surprisingly easy to find a street vendor that sold both limes and mint. Thanks to that and the mini-bar, sugar packets, plug-in kettle, and hotel ice bucket, I quickly had a “Faux”-jito fit for a virtual baby shower.
So congratulations, Krystal and Eric! I couldn’t be more excited for you. Cookie is going to be one lucky kid to have parents as awesome as the two of you. Be sure to check out Joelen
and Krystal’s blog to see all of the other fabulous Filipino and Cuban treats made for this special occasion!
¾ lime, cut into 3 pieces, plus more for garnish
5-6 fresh mint leaves, plus more for garnish
4 ounces simple syrup*, or sugar cane juice, if you have access to it
4 ounces club soda/soda water
*Mix equal parts of sugar and boiling water. Stir until all of the sugar has dissolved.
To the bottom of a glass add the lime and mint. Using a spoon, press down on them and poke them around (muddle) to release the lime juice and mint flavor. Add the ice cubes. Add the simple syrup and club soda and stir. Garnish with more mint leaves and lime.