Lemon-Cassis Jelly Shots

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I’m a grown-ass woman;  I pay taxes.  I check my credit score.   I use semicolons.  I wear ladylike, sophisticated perfume…  These things happen with age.  But, I still obviously have a pottymouth problem.   Still gots some growing up to do, I know, I know.   That’s why I still want to make Jell-O shots–classed-up ones, if you will.

The last time I had a Jell-O shot…  Well, come to think of it, I never consumed it–just bought it for kicks, because (a) they were $1 each, (b) the sign on the bar whiteboard announced them as “SHOTZ,” (c) said bar was as divey as they come, and (d) the bartender told us we could take them to go.  Do you remember our dive adventure, Chrissy?

Before that, I couldn’t even tell you.

We juice real lemons.  This is the “real ingredients” part of this business.

Soak them in real vodka.

I started out intending to make this exactly as it appeared on the New York Times Blog, but it morphed into something else completely.  I couldn’t find creme de mure, so…  Creme de cassis it is.  I was making this for a crowd and wanted it to be crowd-friendly, so…  No gin.  Vodka, you’re up.  Make me proud.  Also, there is nothing blackberry about the final product, except the garnish.  I had already bought the blackberries.  Misleading, but pretty.  We all know people like that, don’t we?

So.  Real lemons and real vodka meet real creme de cassis and fake grape stuff.  It’s okay.  Nobody will die.

Unmolded, cut.

Garnished little army of classy and fun.

Lemon-Cassis Jelly Shots

(Adapted from the New York Times Blog)

For the float (purple) layer:

6 oz creme de cassis

1 packet unflavored gelatin

1 small package (3 oz.) grape Jell-O

1 cup hot water

For the sour lemon base:

1 cup vodka

2/3 cup fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup sugar

4 packets unflavored gelatin

1 cup hot water

Juice enough lemons to give you 2/3 cup juice, keeping the hulls as you squeeze. Roughly chop the squeezed hulls and put them in a container along with the vodka and the lemon juice. Leave at room temperature for at least 2 hours. It’s a good idea to do this before starting the float, so that by the time that has firmed up, your infusion is ready to go. When the float layer is firm, bloom the gelatin in the hot water by sprinkling it slowly while stirring, and continuing stirring until fully dissolved. Add the sugar and stir until that is also fully dissolved. Strain the vodka mixture off from the lemon hulls through a sieve and add it into the gelatin mixture, stirring well. Over a spoon, carefully and slowly pour the lemon sour mix onto the float layer and return to refrigerator, again checking for levelness. Chill overnight.

When ready to serve, dunk the bottom and sides of the dish into some hot water for a few seconds so it slides out easily.  Cut into squares, or use a cookie cutter for shapes, (run your knife or cookie cutter under hot water for a few seconds also to help things glide smoothly) and pull up carefully, using a cake spatula to get under the float layer. Garnish with a blackberry and/or a thin wedge of candied lemon.


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  1. says

    Why didn’t we take those Jello shots again? We just drove around with them sitting on the dashboard. Claaaasy ladies!