Super Bowl Recipes: Team Jelly Shots, Texas Rose Punch And Virgin Texas Rose Punch

Signature drinks are a tricky challenge when planning a Super Bowl party. Cities like Green Bay and Pittsburgh are known more for their preferences for say, an Imp and n' Iron -- a shot of Imperial Whiskey and an Iron City Beer-- than they are a regional martini or punch. (Unless you know of a good way to rim a cocktail glass with fresh,
squeaky cheese curds. And if you do have such a recipe, I've got just two words for you: Call. Me.)

That doesn't mean you cannot have some fun and are stuck just serving beer and soda. Colorful team jelly shots, a strong punch and special drink for the party's designated drivers turn any given Sunday into any given Sunday you might get more than just a little tipsy.

The simple rule of jelly shots is that you want to keep the amount of liquids, either all alcohol or a mix of alcohol and water, equal to the amount of water you would use in making plain Jello. So 3 ounces of Jello are mixed with 1 cup of hot water, cooled and then mixed with either 1 cup of spirits or 1/2 cup of chilled spirits and 1/2 cup of cold water, so on and so on. Keep in mind the stronger you make a jelly shot, the less they taste like anything and the more they taste like straight booze. For the most part, I prefer to make my jellies on the weaker side as they're supposed to be fun, not something that returns you to Spring Break in Cabo, circa 2002: The Foam Party.

Flavored Jello is used in each one of these shots, as experiments with colored spirits and unflavored, clear gelatin were not successful in the lab. No one wants grey and sea foam green jellies. 

Steelers Black and Yellow Jelly Shots (Cherry Lemonade Shots)

If you don't have easy access to Blavod, use plain vodka with 1 full teaspoon of black food coloring. (Although I do recommend seeking it out as it also makes a nice layered shot when poured on top of lemoncello.) Using citrus vodka instead of plain vodka in the yellow layer gives the jelly shot give the jelly just a little more bite and more of a lemonade taste.

6 ounces of Lemon Jello, divided (Either two 3 ounce packages or one 6 ounce package carefully divided.)
3 ounces of Black Cherry Jello
1 cup of citrus vodka, chilled
1/2 cup Blavod vodka, chilled
A few drops of black food coloring
3 cups hot water
1 1/2 cups cold water

Yellow layers:

Heat 1 cup of water until boiling and then mix in 3 ounces of Lemon Jello. Stir until dissolved and then cool for a few minutes. Mix in 1/2 cup chilled citrus vodka and 1/2 cup cold water or any combination of two liquids equal 1 cup total depending how strong you want to make the jelly shot. Pour into an 9x9 or 7x11 glass pan or individual cups in equal measures.

Chill until well set, at least an hour or two. Some people recommend chilling for only 45 minutes, but I've always found that when pouring on the next layer, you almost always melt the middle of the layer and ruin whatever effect you are going for in a colorful presentation.

Black layer:

Heat 1 cup of water until boiling and then mix in 3 ounces of Black Cherry Jello and a few drops of black food coloring. Stir until dissolved and then cool for a few minutes. Mix in 1/2 cup chilled Blavod vodka and 1/2 cup cold water or any combination of two liquids equal 1 cup total depending how strong you want to make the jelly shot.

Carefully pour the black layer over the yellow, moving the pan around as you pour so as not to have all the heat hit one spot and melt the layer below.

Put back into the refrigerator for a couple of more hours and repeat the process with the next yellow layer. Set for 4 to 6 hours. Cut into squares and serve either in cups or on a chilled platter.

Packers Green And Yellow Jelly Shots (Midori Sour Shots)

Use a full cup of Midori in each of the lime layers for a true Midori Sour. Midori has a lower alcohol content, so don't worry about the shots being too strong.

6 ounces of Lime Jello, divided (Either two 3 ounce packages or one 6 ounce package carefully divided.)
3 ounces of Lemon Jello
2 cups Midori
1 cup sweet and sour mix
1/2 cup vodka
2 cups hot water
1/2 cup cold water

Green layers:

Heat one cup water until boiling and then mix in 3 ounces of Lime Jello. Stir until the gelatin completely dissolves and cool for a few minutes. Mix in one cup of Midori. Pour into an 9x9 or 7x11 glass pan or individual cups in equal measures.

Chill until well set, at least an hour or two. (Again, you want to make sure it's set enough that when you pour on the next layer, the base layer doesn't melt.)

Yellow layer:

Heat one sweet and sour mix until boiling and immediately remove from heat so as not to caramelize the sugars. Add in 3 ounces of Lemon Jello and stir until the gelatin completely dissolves. Cool for a few minutes. Mix in 1/2 cup chilled vodka and 1/2 cup cold water or any combination of two liquids equal 1 cup total depending how strong you want to make the jelly shot.

Carefully pour the yellow layer over the green layer, moving the pan around as you pour so as not to have all the heat hit one spot and melt the layer below.

Put back into the refrigerator for a couple of more hours and repeat the process with next green layer. Set for 4 to 6 hours. Cut into squares and serve either in cups or on a chilled platter.

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Texas Rose Punch

Whiskey Magazine's Texas Rose cocktail is easily turned into a refreshing punch, combining the smokiness of bourbon, bubbly sparking prosecco, orange juice and a touch of cherry liqueur.

In a large pitcher combine:

2 cups (16 ounces) orange juice
1 cup bourbon
1-2 ounces cherry liqueur  
2 oranges, washed, sliced and frozen

Pour in:

1 bottle prosecco

Gently stir and serve. The frozen oranges help keep the punch cold without diluting the taste with ice. If possible, use the largest ice cube molds you can find -- the trend in giant ice cubes for scotch or bourbon are perfect for punch.

Virgin Texas Rose Punch

An even more sparkly version of the Texas Rose, without the alcohol for those who abstain from drinking and the kids at your party.

2 liters ginger ale
1 liter sparking blood orange soda
1-2 ounces grenadine

2 orages, washed sliced and frozen

Gently stir together in a a large pitcher and serve. The frozen oranges help keep the punch cold without diluting the taste.

Sarah writes about sports, food and Los Angeles at sarahsprague.com.

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