Summer Appetizers & Cocktails from Loews Hotels

Get a taste of the fun-filled "Summer of Loews" promotion with these delicious apps & drinks!

By Monica Storch, Managing Editor of Macaroni Kid EATS! July 22, 2011

No summer soiree would be complete without an array of tasty appetizers and refreshing cocktails.  Nobody knows this better than the folks at Loews Hotels, who have put together a Summer of Loews promotion featuring special menus that capture all the flavors of summer.  From "Haute Dogs" that elevate the casual dining experience to the classic lobster roll to "skinny dips" and more, the Summer of Loews has something for everyone.  I was lucky enough to be invited to the Summer of Loews launch party here in New York City, where I was treated to a variety of delicious nibbles.  Everything was so tasty that I just had to get the recipes for these amazing "skinny dips" and cocktails.  I hope you'll have as much fun incorporating them into your summer entertaining repertoire as I did sampling them at the launch event!

Guacamole Martini

3 avocados
1 lime
2 garlic cloves, peeled and roasted
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon chopped jalapeno pepper
2 tablespoons chopped red onion
2 tablespoons diced tomatoes
Pinch of salt and pepper, to taste
Baked tortilla chips

In a large bowl, lightly smash the avocado with a fork.  Fold the garlic, cilantro, jalapeno, onion and tomato into the bowl with the avocado.  Juice the lime and add salt and pepper to taste.  Serve in a martini glass with chips on the side.

Hummus Dip

1 16-ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 garlic cloves, peeled and roasted
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper, to taste
1 large cucumber, peeled and sliced
6" pita, toasted
Chopped chives to garnish

In a food processor, combine chickpeas, garlic, parsley and lemon juice; blend slowly, adding the olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.  Garnish with sliced cucumbers and chive and serve with toasted pita breads.

Tzatziki Dip

1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup peeled and sliced cucumbers
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
1 garlic clove, roasted and peeled
1 teaspoon dill
Pinch of salt and pepper, to taste
Original Multigrain Sun Chips or any other chip/pita bread

Combine first 5 ingredients in a food processor and blend for one minute; cover and refrigerate for one hour before serving.  Garnish with fresh dill and serve with multigrain chips.

Summer of Loews Skinny Cruzan Blueberry Mojito

For each cocktail:
6 blueberries
.5 fluid ounce (1 tablespoon) fresh lime juice
6 fresh mint leaves
.5 fluid ounce (1 tablespoon) agave nectar light organic syrup
2 fluid ounces Cruzan Light rum
Tonic to taste
Top with 1 squeezed lime

Shake all ingredients thoroughly with ice and top with tonic to taste.

Summer of Loews Skinny Stoli Strawberry-Black Peppertini

Ingredients for each cocktail:
1.5 ounces Stolichnaya Vodka (or other vodka)
3 ounces of fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
Fresh ground pepper, to taste
1.5 ounces Sweet & Sour Fresh Juice (recipe follows)

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a martini glass.

Sweet & Sour Fresh Juice
Makes 2 Cups

1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup low-calorie sugar

Combine all ingredients.