{drink it up} Strawberry Pucker

I don’t know about you, but I’m nearly up to my eyeballs in strawberries. And that’s saying a lot, considering strawberries didn’t fare so well here in Upstate New York (with a early heat wave and late frost) and that I’m only processing about half of what I usually process each year. From jam, popsicles, and fruit leather to salads, dressings, muffins and shortcake (and don’t forget freezing, pie, and even cupcakes), we go through a lot of strawberries at my house.

But my favorite way to consume berry-goodness is perhaps via methods most would consider an afterthought. I take tremendous pleasure in spooning off the foam from jam into a bowl, letting it cool slightly, and then slurping it up unapologetically (it’s like candy, people!). And what about the sweet syrup that remains after the last of the macerated strawberries have been lovingly ladled on top of flaky biscuits and cloud-like whipped cream? Dang that stuff is good. When I feel compelled to do more with it than simply drink it down, I mix it with a few choice spirits to make a perfect summer cocktail.

{makes one cocktail}


1/2 ounce limoncello*
2 ounces (1/4 cup) leftover strawberry shortcake syrup**
2 ounces (1/4 cup) vodka
1/2 ounce Campari
Strawberries for garnish (optional)


In a boston shaker filled with ice, combine limoncello, strawberry syrup, vodka and Campari. Cover and shake well. Strain into a martini glass and garnish with strawberries (float them, skewer them, or create a slit in the middle and hang on the edge of the glass). Enjoy!


*If you don’t have limoncello, you can use lemon juice and a teensy bit of honey or agave nectar

**Not making strawberry shortcake? No worries – just mash 1/2 cup of sliced strawberries with a tablespoon of sugar and strain out the juice


11 Comments Add yours

  1. I had a strawberry marathon of jamming (4 different kinds) and freezing and thought I was super-efficient to get it all done already, but I’ll have to go into the freezer and defrost one of the containers of strawberries I froze already to try this – serves me right for being speedy! I wonder if you can use a spoonful of jam instead? I bet that would be tasty, too.

    1. Deanna says:

      Hi Ingrid! Thanks for your comment. Jam might be a little thick for this cocktail (since you need the cold, syrupy juice of the strawberries), but you don’t have to limit yourself to just strawberries! This cocktail would still be awesome if you swapped out the strawberry juice for raspberry or orange juice. The fun thing about cocktails is there really is no end to what you can make, so feel free to experiment. I’d love to hear what you come up with (or, if you use the jam, let me know how it goes)!

      And wow, 4 kinds of strawberry jam? That’s awesome! I actually make my strawberry jam with a splash of Triple Second – I bet if you added a little of the limoncello and/or Campari in the cocktail to some jam (the alcohol burns off, leaving just the citrusy/bitter brightness to emphasis the strawberries), you could have a mean “strawberry pucker” jam! Good luck with the rest of your canning endeavors!

  2. Kate H. says:

    Made some strawberry vodka, I wonder if I use that and some simple syrup if it will work out the same.

    1. Deanna says:

      Hey Kate! Definitely try it out and let me know how it goes. Fellow FSC contributor Christine made some strawberry tequila (I believe) for a food swap last year and people were clamoring for it! Strawberry-infused liquor makes my little heart flutter 🙂

  3. Oh wow! Sounds amazing! And, I have all of it. Well, I don’t campari…but the rest! Yum!

    1. Deanna says:

      Campari is tasty, you should definitely pick some up! I really like it over ice, topped with club soda and a wedge of lime (I ordered this out once, and the barkeep added some grapefruit vodka – so good!). Happy drinking!

  4. Yum! Gotta love Limoncello!

    1. Deanna says:

      Word to that.

  5. That sounds so great!!!!!!!!!! I’ll try to make it for the next party in my house 🙂 thanks!!!

    1. Deanna says:

      That’s a great idea! I love having a pitcher of a tasty cocktail available for guests when they arrive (I recently did this with my Rosie Collins recipe, and it was a big hit!).

      If you want to make a pitcher-sized Strawberry Pucker, here’s how to do it (serves 12):

      In a pitcher, combine:
      – 3/4 cup limoncello
      – 3 cups strawberry syrup
      – 3 cups vodka
      – 3/4 cup Campari

      Stir to incorporate. Top off with strawberry lemonade ice cubes (put strawberries in an ice cube tray and top with lemonade or lemon juice. Freeze until solid).

      If you wanted you could also top this off with Club Soda to make it fizzy and extra-refreshing!

      Have fun!

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