Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A Summer Soirre: Fruit Water (gluten, egg, dairy, nut, other things free. Refined sugar free)

So, this is one of those recipes that just SHOUTS "Summer"!  Unfortunately for a lot of us this year, summer doesn't want to SEEM to get here!  I feel for those in the Lower 48 who got snow last week because so did we.  And today, unfortunately, the clouds are once again rolling in and making me yearn for my grill (which I've been able to use a total of three times so far this year *grumble*).  The smell of cooking food on the grill, sunglasses sitting on your nose and a lovely beverage in your hand.  It doesn't get much better than that.

Now mind you, this recipe is also well suited for any get together you have this summer if you want to serve something other than cola, iced tea or some type of home made punch.  It is delicious, fresh tasting and the best part?  Easy as all get out to make!

One of the exchange students from Brazil (if I remember the region she came from correctly) in college taught me this during "Spring Break Tiki Week" that we had for the commuters (I was secretary of the Commuter Council for three years).  Part of that week was a mock tail "tiki party" in the Commuter Center and Juanita taught me how to make "fruit water" (as close as she could translate to English).  She said that vendors in her country actually would sell drinks like this on the street during the summer with whatever seasonal fruit was freshest at that time.  And seeing the watermelon at the store today, I decided to dig out that old recipe and make a lovely summer beverage...hoping that the weather will follow suit!

Note, this is a recipe that just shouts, "Play fast and loose with me".  It really is NOT an exact science.  You can make a little fruit stretch far, or you can make this really thick with fruit and make it into almost a fruit smoothie texture.  It all depends on your tastes.
Fruit Water (gluten, egg, dairy, nut, other things free.  Refined Sugar Free Option)
  • 2 cups (or more or less if desired) diced, fresh, seasonal Fruit (I like watermelon best, but papaya and mango are good too)
  • 1 2/3 cups water (plus more if needed/wanted)
  • Simple syrup or refined sugar free syrup (recipes below) to taste 
Puree fruit in a blender with water.  Add simple syrup to taste and chill until ready to use.  

When ready to serve, fill cups with ice and pour fruit water over ice.  Garnish with a slice of fruit of choice (I think watermelon looks the coolest if you're going for the coolness factor ;) and enjoy said lovely beverage. 
Simple Syrup/Refined Sugar Free Syrup Instructions:
You can either use simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water boiled in a pan until syrupy.  I usually mix up 1 cup sugar to 1/2 cup water if I'm going to use it and go from there) or if you are looking for a refined sugar free option, I've had equally good luck with honey and maple syrup to sweeten this drink. Just mix about 1/3 of a cup of honey or maple syrup with about 1 cup of water to make your "new and cool" syrup.

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