6 easy drinks that’ll be the life of the party

Add flair to your party spread with some yummy, easy drinks.

The menu is ready, the table is set, and your outfit’s all planned out. But wait, what are your guests drinking? Fret not, here comes Butterkicap’s list of easy drink recipes to the rescue.

From classic favourites to fancy mocktails with a local twist, we’ve put together a list of six recipes that are easy to make and sure to keep your guests happy.

Sirap Cincau aka Grass Jelly with Rose Syrup

This simple combination of Sirap and Cincau is the perfect complement to party food.

Ingredients: Serves 10

  • 500ml rose syrup
  • 500g grass jelly
  • 3 litres water
  • ice

Method:

  • Julienne or cut Cincau into little cubes.
  • In a large jug, combine rose syrup and water and mix thoroughly.
  • Add grass jelly.
  • Add ice when ready to serve.
  • Stir to get bits of Cincau into the glass when pouring.

Tips

  • Different brands of rose syrup may have different syrup to water ratios. We suggest following those ratios.
  • It’s okay to err on the sweet side as Malaysians do love their drinks sweet. Plus, you can always top up individual glasses with extra water if guests prefer their drinks slightly less diabetes-inducing.

Sirap Bandung Soda aka Bandung Rose Syrup Soda

The added soda gives some sizzle and pop to the ordinary Sirap Bandung.

Bright pink and normally very sweet, Sirap Bandung is either loved or absolutely loathed.

But this recipe elevates the standard Sirap Bandung with the inclusion of ice cream soda, turning this drink into one surprisingly refreshing despite its shocking pink tones and sweetness.

Ingredients: Serves 10

  • 500ml rose syrup
  • 720g evaporated milk
  • 1.65 litres ice cream soda
  • 500ml water
  • ice

Method:

  • Mix syrup with evaporated milk in a large jug. Stir thoroughly.
  • Add water. Stir.
  • Add ice. Stir.
  • Finally, add ice cream soda and stir.

Tips

  • Avoid watering down this drink. Let the ice reduce its sweetness instead.

Grass Jelly Soya

Also know as the ‘Michael Jackson’ because its black and white.

This drink is also affectionately known as “Michael Jackson” due to its black and white colour combination. It’s a very enriching drink and the grass jelly adds a great, chewy texture that is very light on the palate.

Ingredients: Serves 10

  • 4 litres cold unsweetened soya bean juice
  • 1kg grass jelly
  • 250g coconut sugar (Gula Melaka)
  • 250g hot water

Method

  • Grate coconut sugar.
  • In a small pot, add hot boiling water to grated coconut sugar and whisk to melt.
  • Julienne or cut grass jelly into little cubes.
  • Pour soya bean juice into a large jug.
  • Add coconut sugar syrup and stir thoroughly.
  • Add grass jelly.
  • Don’t forget to scoop out grass jelly into the glasses when serving.

Tips

  • Avoid adding ice to this drink as watered down soya bean juice does not taste good.
  • Skip boxed soya milk. Go to your local market or soya bean food truck instead to get a nice fresh supply of unsweetened soya milk.

Fizzy Fruit Punch

Fizzy Fruit Punch – a classic recipe that has stood the test of time.

The next drink on our list is one that brings back memories, especially when served in an intricately cut glass punch bowl with matching cups and ladle.

There are many varieties and recipes for fruit punch out there, but this is one we really like as every single sip tastes like childhood.

Ingredients: Serves 10

  • 200ml orange Sunquick cordial
  • 200ml rose syrup
  • 3 litres Sprite or 7-Up
  • 3 litres ice cream soda
  • 2 large lemons
  • 2 large navel oranges
  • ice

Method

  • Slice oranges and lemons thinly.
  • In a large jug or drink dispenser, mix Sunquick cordial and rose syrup. Stir thoroughly.
  • Add Sprite or 7-up and ice cream soda. Give it a good stir.
  • Top with orange and lemon slices and ice.

Tips

  • You do not need to include sliced fruits into glasses when serving, but it does make for a prettier picture.
  • Have a punch bowl? Use that instead.

Air Mata Kucing aka Dried Longan

Air Mata Kucing has a light herbal but strong, intense caramelised flavour and a deliciously dark tone.

Air Mata Kucing literally means “cat tears”, but thankfully its list of ingredients does not call for any member of the feline population, but instead is made with dried Mata Kucing or Longan.

Air Mata Kucing tends to have a slightly herbal, strong, intense caramelised flavour and a deliciously dark tone. This recipe adds a little twist to the standard Air Mata Kucing with the add-on flavour of pandanus.

Ingredients: Serves 10

  • 775g dried longan
  • 375ml + 375ml hot water
  • 300g coconut sugar (Gula Melaka)
  • 10 tbsp molasses
  • 2 ½ tbsp white sugar
  • 8 pandanus leaves, knotted
  • 1.125 litres water
  • ice

Method

  • In a bowl, soak dried longan with 375ml hot water and cover.
  • In a deep pan or pot, mix 375ml hot water with coconut sugar, molasses, white sugar and pandanus leaves. Put heat on medium low and stir or whisk until the sugars have thoroughly dissolved. Remove pandanus leaves.
  • Once the dried longans have rehydrated, drain excess water and combine longans and sugar mixture in a large jug.
  • Add water and stir thoroughly.
  • Add ice.
  • Don’t forget to scoop some longan into glasses when serving guests.

Tips

  • This drink is great for making ahead of time as the longan sugar mixture can be kept refrigerated in an airtight container for a week or two. Only add water when you’re ready to serve.

Rosemary Calamondin Lime-ade

An east meets west take on a delicious mocktail.

This is a refreshingly delicious mocktail to serve when you’d rather have a drink that’s more limey than sugar sweet.

A combination of east meets west flavours coupled with the scent and taste of fresh rosemary adds a subtle but lovely dimension to this deceptively simple drink. It’s so good you may need to make extra.

Ingredients: Serves 20

  • 325g white sugar
  • 325g water
  • 10g fresh rosemary (roughly 10 sprigs)
  • 350g calamondin lime juice (about 100 limes)
  • 350g lemon juice (about 8 lemons)
  • 3 litres soda water
  • ice

Method

  • Make a simple syrup by combining sugar and water in a pot and stir over medium-high heat. The sugars should dissolve thoroughly, resulting in a crystal clear, slightly thick liquid. Once the edges start to simmer, remove from heat and let cool thoroughly.
  • Using a pestle, bash entire sprigs of rosemary. You just want to bruise them somewhat instead of disintegrating them thoroughly.
  • Put rosemary, including the bits that have fallen off, into a large jug.
  • Add calamondin lime and lemon juice. Stir.
  • Next, add 1 to 1.5 litres of soda water and stir to mix thoroughly.
  • Add cooled simple syrup.
  • Add balance soda water and stir.

Tips

  • If serving from a jug, you can either add ice to it or leave in an ice box to be added to individual glasses upon serving so the melting ice doesn’t dilute the soda too quickly.
  • This drink is pretty enough to be served in individual glasses instead of one big jug.
  • Don’t forget to add a sprig of bashed rosemary into each glass so the drink looks pretty.
  • For extra bubbles, use canned soda water instead of bottled sparkling water.

Extra tips

  • You can use cold or room temperature water when needed for the easy drink recipes above. The ice will help cool things down.
  • Don’t forget to have extra plain water on hand as some guests may not want anything sweet to drink.
  • Ice! Get extra bags of ice and keep these in the freezer.

This article first appeared in butterkicap.com

Butterkicap is a food and culture platform and community that enables anyone to experience Malaysia through stories of her people, food and places.