What is caipirinha?
Caipirinha is Brazil's national cocktail, made with cachaça, sugar and lime. Cachaça is Brazil's most common distilled alcoholic beverage. Like rum, it is made from sugarcane. Cachaça is made from sugarcane alcohol, obtained from the fermentation of sugarcane juice which is afterwards distilled.
Once almost unknown outside Brazil, the drink has become more popular and more widely available in recent years, in large part due to the rising availability of first-rate brands of cachaça outside Brazil. The International Bartender Association has designated it as one of their Official Cocktails. The word "caipirinha" is the diminutive version of the word "caipira", which refers to someone from the countryside, being an almost exact equivalent of the American English hillbilly. The word may be used as either a masculine or a feminine noun, but when referring to this drink it is only feminine (usage of diminutives is conspicuous in Brazil). However, a Brazilian hardly ever thinks of a "country person" when ordering a "Caipirinha". In the mind of a Brazilian, the word "Caipirinha" is mostly associated with the drink itself.
Caipirinha cocktail recipe
- 1½ limes, chopped into cubes
- 3 teaspoons white granulated sugar
- Big handful ice cubes
- 65ml/2½fl oz Cachaca
- Add the lime cubes and sugar to a cocktail mixer and using a muddle (or the end of a wooden rolling pin), mash the limes and sugar into a paste.
- Add the Cachaca and some ice cubes, cover with a lid and shake 6-8 times.
- Pour into a highball glass and serve.
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