I was tracking down some good aquavit the other day to pair with a potato-herring appetizer I'm making for New Years (see next entry) and found myself in the 'bitters' isle of a really good neighborhood wine/spirits shop. I'd never purchased bitters before but have been reading a lot about them recently and figured, what the heck, let's try the classic Angostura bitters.
Bitters are aromatic botanicals in an alcohol base. You only need to use a few dashes. I'm just starting my exploration of cooking with them, but here's the absolutely most simple recipe you can imagine...just mix with carbonated water (hopefully made with your own machine rather than purchasing bottled water!), ice, and consider adding a squeeze of lime. Very refreshing. I've been drinking this all afternoon while cooking!