Five ways to drink your dinner: cooking with vodka

I spent the past weekend preparing for summertime fun and frolic, and that means just one thing: vodka.

Vodka not just in my glass, but vodka in my food. Summer is a great time to brown-bag both a beverage and a meal, and these libation-licious dishes are some of my favorite ways to consume vodka.

5. Orange-vanilla Italian ricotta cheesecake I love me some cheesecake, and this recipe -- which features an orange marmalade-vodka glaze -- gives me plenty to love. Fortunately, the recipe will leave enough vodka in the bottle that while the cheesecake is in the oven, you'll have plenty to drink until your drunken masterpiece is ready.

4. Angel hair pasta with spicy vodka sauce As a first-generation Sicilian-American, I always include pasta in my libation equation when I'm looking for both drink and dinner. This spicy angel hair preparation is heaven on a plate.

3. Drunken shrimp Many people like vodka for its lack of flavor, but there's no lack of flavor in this South Asian dish replete with lemongrass, chiles, garlic...and vodka. You're bound to enjoy your dinner, even if you don't remember it.

2. Oat and Honey Vodka.l Honey Bunches of Oats takes on a whole new meaning with this recipe for a great breakfast. Just skip the cereal.

1. Vodka chocolate sauce For a last liter of late-night fun, you can't beat the mix of chocolate and vodka. This sauce is designed to be served over cashew-coated ice cream balls, but don't stop there...

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