Cool Cucumber Mint Sparkler
Serves: 2 to 3
Cool, refreshing, sweet and spicy - this summertime sparkler has it all!
Puree cucumbers in a food processor or blender and strain the juice. You'll have at least 1 cup.
Bring sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepan and simmer just until sugar melts, about 1 minute. Let cool. This is your simple syrup.
Combine cucumber juice, simple syrup, lime juice, mint and jalapeños in a pitcher. Chill until ready to serve. Pour into glasses and top with sparkling water.
SOME GUIDELINES FOR "DRINKS FROM THE GARDEN"
The basic formula: Blend perfectly ripe fruits or vegetables with tender herbs or blossoms, citrus juice and your favorite sweetener in your blender or food processor and finish with a splash of something sparkling like dry soda, sparkling cider or a sparkling wine.
Make a batch of simple syrup and keep it in the fridge to blend with lemon or lime juice for your own lemonade or to bring out the punch in other fruits. Recipe: 1 part unrefined sugar to 1 part water. Simmer to dissolve the sugar and chill.
Try steeping woody herbs like lemon thyme, rosemary or sage in hot simple syrup for 30 minutes. Strain out the herbs and chill the flavored syrup to use in your creations!
More suggestions for delightful garden drink combinations:
• Blueberries, strawberries and/or blackberries with fresh basil, lime juice and honey. Finish with sparkling cider. • Peaches or nectarines with lemon juice, lemon thyme-infused simple syrup, and rose petals. Finish with Moscato d'Asti or your favorite sparkling wine. • Apricots (peeled) with fennel fronds, lemon and honey. Finish with pomegranate dry soda.
Recipe by, PCC Chef
Source: Demonstrated on KING 5's "Gardening with Ciscoe" show, which aired on July 2, 2011.