Cucumber Jalapeño Mule – 3 Ways (or maybe 6 ways!)

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Cuc Jalapeno Lime MuleMules, those descendants of the Moscow Mule in all their forms, are becoming more and more popular.  Why?  Because they are a) easy to prepare and b) taste great.  What better cocktail to serve your guests than this popular libation?  Now, you Moscow Mule aficionados out there can rightly complain that all of these erstwhile concoctions containing ginger beer are not Mules.  Just like the Martini was co-opted into many forms, the Mule now has countless varieties.  So all I can say is: “Smile, deal with it and serve your guests delicious drinks!”

These Mules are all based on muddled cucumbers and seeded jalapeños. What changes is the fruit juice and the base spirit.  I started to call these, “South Texas Mules”, since I used either Ranger Creek’s .36 White Whiskey, or Cinco Vodka which are both distilled here in South Texas. You can use either spirit in any of these cocktails.  Each brings its own twist to the party.  I found that I preferred the Whiskey with the cranberry and the Vodka with the pomegranate.

Ranger Creek’s .36 White Whiskey is their ‘White Dog,’ or unaged bourbon.  It is slightly sweet and a bit grainy with a hint of fruit.  It also has the ‘bite’ of white whiskey.  Cinco Vodka has a slight aroma of alcohol, but beneath that is a light, pleasant note of grain. The flavors are mostly neutral, with hints of wheat and some vanilla.

The secret to any cocktail is premium ingredients, but:

The Secret to Great Mules

Rocky MuleWhether you are making a classic Moscow Mule or some variety, the one thing that will take your cocktail over the top is fresh ginger.  This will mean that you cannot build the Mule in a glass or mug, but the added zing makes the effort worthwhile.  The easiest way to use fresh ginger is to purchase frozen crushed ginger at your supermarket. This generally comes in 1 tsp squares.  I cut the frozen square into 4 pieces and use 1 per cocktail.  Alternatively, slice a coin of fresh ginger from a ginger root and crush it with your muddler in your shaking tin.  You don’t even need to peel it first.

You can easily offer all 6 varieties of this Mule at your next party.  Pre-slice the cucumber and ginger.  Stem the jalapeños and split them down the center lengthwise.  They are easy to seed this way.  Then just slice them short wise and use 4 pieces to equal 2 slices.

Cucumber Jalapeño Mule

Let’s start with lime.  This is as close the the classic Moscow Mule as any of these come.  I like both the Whiskey and Vodka versions of this.  This cocktail is ginger forward with a background freshness from the cucumber.  The jalapeño stays behind the scene enhancing the cucumber.Cuc Jalapeno Mule CU

  • 3 – 4 slices of fresh cucumber – I used the English variety
  • 2 slices seeded jalapeño
  • 1 slice Fresh ginger or 1/4 tsp fresh frozen crushed ginger
  • 2 oz. Fresh lime juice
  • 2 oz. White Whiskey or Vodka
  • 1 oz. 2:1 Simple Syrup (2 parts sugar to 1 part water)
  • 6 oz Ginger Beer (I use Goslings or Fever Tree)
  • Slice of lime for garnish
  1. Muddle cucumber, jalapeño and ginger with the lime juice in your shaker tin
  2. Add Spirit of choice and simple syrup.
  3. Fill shaker with ice cubes and shake to chill and further muddle: 20-30 seconds
  4. Double strain into Copper Mug or chilled Collins glass over fresh ice.
  5. Add Ginger Beer and garnish

Cucumber Jalapeño Mule with Cranberry

Cuc Jalapeno Cran MuleAs noted above, I preferred the Whiskey with this, but the Vodka is good too.  The recipe is the same as with the lime juice – just substitute the cranberry juice.  I use an organic, unsweetened brand.  The cocktail is tart with spicy ginger.  The cucumber and cranberry go very well together.  I generally serve Mules in the appropriate copper mug, but I wanted to picture this with the color.  This will make a great Holiday cocktail – bright red and fizzy!

  • 3 – 4 slices of fresh cucumber – I used the English variety
  • 2 slices seeded jalapeño
  • 1 slice Fresh ginger or 1/4 tsp fresh frozen crushed ginger
  • 2 oz. Unsweetened cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. White Whiskey or Vodka (I preferred the White Whiskey)
  • 1 oz. 2:1 Simple Syrup (2 parts sugar to 1 part water)
  • 6 oz Ginger Beer (I use Goslings or Fever Tree)
  1. Muddle cucumber, jalapeño and ginger with the cranberry juice in your shaker tin
  2. Add Spirit of choice and simple syrup.
  3. Fill shaker with ice cubes and shake to chill and further muddle: 20-30 seconds
  4. Double strain into Copper Mug or chilled Collins glass over fresh ice.
  5. Add Ginger Beer

Cucumber Jalapeño Mule with Pomegranate

The pomegranate adds a rich note and is not as tart as either the lime or cranberry varieties above.   I used Pom brand which is unsweetened, but is sweeter than some others I’ve had.  The recipe is a bit different because of the sweetness of the Pom.  You might need to adjust the pomegranate to simple syrup ratio if you use a different brand.

  • 3 – 4 slices of fresh cucumber – I used the English varietyCuc Jalapeno Pom Mule CU
  • 2 slices seeded jalapeño
  • 1 slice Fresh ginger or 1/4 tsp fresh frozen crushed ginger
  • 2 1/2 oz. Unsweetened pomegranate juice
  • 2 oz. White Whiskey or Vodka (I preferred the White Whiskey)
  • 1/2 oz. 2:1 Simple Syrup (2 parts sugar to 1 part water)
  • 6 oz Ginger Beer (I use Goslings or Fever Tree)
  1. Muddle cucumber, jalapeño and ginger with the pomegranate juice in your shaker tin
  2. Add Spirit of choice and simple syrup.
  3. Fill shaker with ice cubes and shake to chill and further muddle: 20-30 seconds
  4. Double strain into Copper Mug or chilled Collins glass over fresh ice.
  5. Add Ginger Beer

So there they are.  These will be a simple way to offer multiple varieties of Mules to your guests.

Cheers!


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