I’ll be honest. I was always aware of when the Kentucky Derby occurred and watched it some years, but I hadn’t thought of it as such a special occasion until I met my husband about a decade ago. He’s had a lifetime passion for thoroughbreds. As happens when you form a relationship with someone, you grow to appreciate new hobbies. For me it has been horse racing. (Don’t worry. It wasn’t all one direction. He’s learned to love hikes.)
Over the past year my enthusiasm for horses has grown even more, as we have begun building a stable. Yes, you read that correctly. We now have horses that race for us. My favorite part of this is getting to spend time with the horses- learning their personalities, watching them train, petting their noses (That’s Smart Alex & me earlier this year in the pic at the top), and feeding them carrots.
As a new stable, we don’t have a horse in the Derby, and that’s okay. However, we will be hosting a Kentucky Derby party on the big day. In addition to serving an assortment of snacks, there will be champagne and the drink of the day- the mint julep. For me, more than any other food or beverage, I associate bourbon with the Derby. Between being held in Kentucky and the julep, it makes sense.
This week I’ll be focusing on bourbon-based foods. This is a win for my husband, as he is an ardent fan of bourbon. I’m less so, at least as far as being my beverage. I do like the earthiness it can add to a dish, so I’m glad to use it in my cooking.
Throughout the years of Think Tasty I have shared a number of bourbon recipes. Probably the simplest, but most often used in our home, is Bourbon Sugar. There’s something nice about adding a pinch of it to your cup of coffee, even on a weekday, and getting a slight hint of bourbon in each sip. It’s very simple to make. The hardest part is waiting the week between making and using it.