How to make a real Pisco Sour (and what to do with the remaining egg yolk)

Jun 05 2011 Published by under Uncategorized

I've got a big fat post in the works with all kinds of juicy goodness regarding my recent mini-holiday in New Job City, so for those of you who remain interested in this Great Space Coaster ride of a career path I'm on--and let's face it, you're DYING to know what color scheme I went with for the lab--watch this space.

Tonight, however, let's talk cocktails. Now, normally I find Physioprof's recipes to be of remarkably high quality, so imagine my surprise and disappointment yesterday when he posted this sad, sad excuse for a Pisco Sour. One of the defining features of this decades-old drink is its super frothy head, something that can only be achieved with the help of a delicious, salmonella-free egg white, and as you can see, this is a glaring omission in PP's version. Here's how to do it for reals:

First, gather your ingredients. You'll need

2.5 oz Pisco
3/4 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/2 oz simple syrup
1 egg white
dash Amargo Chuncho bitters (but Angosturra will do just fine)


1. Add all ingredients except the bitters to a shaker without ice. When making egg drinks, you need to do what's called a "dry shake" first, to optimize the emulsion. Shake the shit out of it. There! You just did your first dry shake.

2. Add a bunch of ice to the shaker, and shake the shit out of it again. I am so serious--shake it until you feel like your arm is going to fall off, or you can't feel your fingers from the cold, and then pass it to your significant other, your BFF, your cat, whatever, so that THEY then shake the shit out of it until their arm (or paw) feels like it's going to fall off.

3. Strain into a cocktail glass. It should be sort of a cloudy, pale yellow on the bottom and super foamy on the top, which will allow the bitters to be all pretty when you drizzle them across, comme ça:

The result is a creamy, nutty, slightly lemony, slightly sweet, totally delicious drink. You can enjoy it while you're making good use of the leftover egg yolk in my...STEAK TARTARE!

Oh yes, we are all raw all the time here. No, no we are not, it's just that a gas main broke in our neighborhood recently and we didn't have any hot water or cooking gas for like 3 days, so we're sort of in that "no-cooking" mentality, you know? Maybe you don't know. It's cool.

Anyway, steak tartare is something that is incredibly easy to make but seems really fancy and also a little risqué (OMG raw meat!), making it a great thing to serve at parties. Peeps will be impressed, I promise. But it is also so good and so easy that maybe you just want to make it when you're staying home on a Saturday night watching baseball with your cats! Hypothetically speaking. Nobody's judging anybody, here.

You want to choose a relatively lean cut of meat--tenderloin is best, but something like top sirloin will do just fine, too. Stay away from stringier cuts like skirt steak, and obviously whatever you get, get it from a butcher or other meat purveyor you trust. Chop up a few ounces real small, and throw it in a bowl. Add maybe a teaspoon and a half or so of finely chopped shallots and chopped capers, a dollop of dijon mustard, and top it off with a generous splash of Worcestershire Sauce. The actual amounts of each are totally up to you and your taste--one of my favorite places to get steak tartare serves it with a little tray of all this stuff so you can doctor it however you want!

Mix all that up with just a pinch of salt and a ton of black pepper, and then lay the egg yolk on top. Stare at it, and take in the beauty. Mix thoroughly, and then serve immediately with something crunchy and salty--crackers, tortilla chips, toasted french bread crostini, no matter--they're all just a vehicle for getting that delicious melt-in-your-mouth tartare in your face.

And there you have it! Raw eggs--good for cocktails, good for snacks, good for the SOUL.


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