Today's drink is a riff on last week's Slice of Life (I had to find a use for that extra watermelon juice). I happened upon this cocktail recipe, but have no idea where it came from, so apologies that I cannot give proper credit to its author. Apologies also to this anonymous author since I changed the name from Ruby Slipper to Pink Slipper--the color of the drink explains why. I experimented with this recipe and used Deep Eddy Ruby Red vodka in one drink, and plain, non-flavored vodka (Tito's) in another. I am convinced that the best way to mix this drink is to use 1 ounce of both for a bit more balance. Finally, I couldn't find a habanero pepper, so I used a serrano instead. Experiment a bit to get the right level of heat you prefer. I used three thin slices of serrano and it was fairly mild with just a tinge of spiciness. The basil, watermelon and sparkling water make it extremely refreshing.
2 ounces Deep Eddy Ruby Red Vodka (you can also used 1 ounce of DERR vodka with 1 ounce of plain vodka)
1 thin (de-seeded) habanero clove (I used about 3-4 thin slices of serrano pepper, seeds removed)
1/2 ounce fresh watermelon juice
1 basil leaf, plus 1 for garnish
Splash of sparkling water
In a cocktail shaker, muddle raspberries and habanero clove. Add vodka, watermelon juice, and one basil leaf over ice and shake for 20 seconds. Strain over fresh ice (use a double strainer if you do not want any raspberry seeds in your drink). Top with sparkling water and garnish with remaining basil leaf. (Serves 1)