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Brazilian Lime Cocktail Recipe: Caipirinha

What's the big idea?

There isn't a good translation into English for the name of Brazil's national drink, Caipirinha. Literally it's a slightly derogative word meaning "little country bumpkin", or something similar. It is believed to have been consumed originally as a remedy for colds and flu, and many people still drink it for that reason, but now it's a favourite at carnivals and parties, and a Brazil football match or other sporting event is as good an excuse as you need for a party!

Shopping List

Here's the list of what you need:

  • 4 limes, quartered*
  • 4 tablespoons sugar**
  • 4 fl oz Cachaça or white rum
  • Plenty of ice
*Variations of the drink exist using lemons, tangerines, oranges or kiwi fruit instead of limes, but limes are the traditional and most popular ingredient.
**Purists only use cane sugar. Others swear by either white or brown sugar. Experiment and see which you prefer! Brazilians like the drink quite sweet, but you can increase or reduce the amount of sugar to your personal taste.

What To Do

  • Place the limes and sugar in a large flat-bottomed glass
  • Mix together with the back of a wooden spoon to squeeze as much juice as possible out of the limes
  • Fill the glass with crushed ice
  • Pour over the Cachaça or rum
  • Enjoy!

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