Cranberry Spice Cocktails, a Birthday and a SALE!

Cranberry spice cocktail – great for the Holidays (and any other time of the year).

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Hello everyone! Thank you so much for stopping by. Of course, I always love having you here but I especially love that you came by today because today is a very special day for me: It’s The Spice Train’s second birthday!

I am so excited to look back over the past two years and see how far this project has come. And it’s all thanks to you my readers, you are the ones who are making this adventure so much fun for me and keep me going, thank you so much for that!

To celebrate I’m having a sale for my ebook Food Photography Behind the Scenes – Bright Food, Dark Shadows. Starting today and for the next 30 days you can get the book 30 percent off when you enter TSTBirthday into the discount code field during the checkout process. Enjoy the book!

Ebook Sale

And now on to the other important part of the celebration: cranberry spice cocktails. Yum! I adapted this recipe from Bon Appetit but added a few spices and streamlined the procedure a bit.

Here’s how it goes: you infuse a simple syrup with orange zest, cinnamon, clove, cardamom and cranberries. Then you chill the mix, add apple cranberry juice, lemon juice and rum. Then you pour it over crushed ice and drink it (warning: it’s quite potent).

This cocktail is one of the best I’ve ever had, juicy, exciting and full of flavor. I love it. Very appropriate any time of the year but especially in the fall (and, of course, perfect also for the Holiday season, if you care to think that far ahead). :)

–nicole x


Cranberry Spice Cocktails Recipe

serves 5

This recipe was adapted from Bon Appetit, Cranberry Cocktails for Thanksgiving Day.


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 green cardamom pods, slightly crushed
  • 1/2 cup frozen cranberries
  • 14 tablespoons light rum
  • 6 tablespoons apple cranberry juice
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • mint as garnish



  1. Add sugar, water, cinnamon, orange zest, cloves and cardamom to a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Add the cranberries and simmer until they start to pop.
  3. Turn the heat off and let the mix cool to room temperature.
  4. Take out the cinnamon stick and fish out the cloves and the large pieces of the cardamom pods.
  5. Fill the mix into a jar, add 1/2 cup rum, cover and chill in the fridge.
  6. Strain the mix and reserve the cranberries.
  7. Add the remaining 6 tablespoons of rum, the apple cranberry juice and the lemon juice.
  8. Serve over crushed ice and decorate with the reserved cranberries and mint leaves. (You can eat the cranberries if you’d like).


Food Photography and Styling: I used my Crate & Barrel prosecco glasses here and sat them on a dark blue tile in front of a black foam board for this shot. Looking at the surface of the drinks I realize I could have been more careful with the food styling and could have arranged the topping in a less accidental way but on the other hand I actually like the casual and realistic look of the drinks, what do you think? As usual, I lit the photo with my strobe.

Nikon D600, 105mm, f/8, 1/125 sec., ISO 100. One Hensel Integra Pro Plus 500 Monolight.

This entry was posted in Drinks.


  1. Louise | Cygnet Kitchen says:

    Happy 2nd Blog Birthday, Nicole!! I have been meaning to buy your ebook for ages, what a great offer! Have just downloaded and can’t wait to read it. Thank you!
    You can be sure I will be saving this gorgeous cocktail recipe in my Christmas folder, although I might have to try it beforehand ;-) x

    • Nicole B. says:

      Thank you, Razena! Glasses can be very tricky, to be honest I don’t really like working with glass very much. :)

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