~more recently updated recipes~
"St Louis is a very green city," new friends from New York remarked during a recent house-hunting visit. Then without realizing beforehand, I proceeded to prove them right in an unexpected way, by serving a "very green meal", starting with an unusual tasting, surprisingly delicious and completely refreshing cucumber lemonade. (Those new friends? Nupur from One Hot Stove and her lovely husband Vasant!)
RECIPE for CUCUMBER LEMONADE
Time to table: 2 hours
Makes about 3-1/2 cups
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 large cucumbers, stem and flower ends sliced off, skins on, cut in large chunks
Juice of 2 large lemons, about 6 tablespoons
Cold club soda, to serve
Lemon and cucumber slices, to serve
Make a Simple Syrup. Bring the water and sugar to a boil in a medium saucepan. Let boil softly for about 3 minutes.
Juice the Cucumbers. In a food processor, process the whole cucumbers, until very smooth and watery. Press cucumber purée through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl, really pressing. You'll want about 2 cups cucumber juice.
Combine and Chill. Combine the simple syrup, cucumber juice and lemon juice. Chill until ready to serve.
Enjoy! To serve, fill champagne or other glasses 1/4 to 1/2 full with mixture. Fill with cold club soda. If desired, garnish each glass with rounds of lemon and/or cucumber.
ALANNA's TIPS & KITCHEN NOTES
CUCUMBERS (2006) I used English cucumbers with their tender, very green skins. The cucumber juice was very very green! (2015) I used two large cucumbers from the garden and tested the water two ways, with and without the cucumber seeds. I much preferred the cucumber juice made with seeds, the color was prettier and the taste more cucumber-y.
STRAINING THE CUCUMBER JUICE (2006) I used this chinois / china cap but needed to use a fine-mesh strainer too. The chinois does do an excellent job extracting all the liquid.
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