It’s been hot all week and it’ll be even hotter this weekend so naturally I spent the morning baking. My default philosophy: if I’m going to be miserable, I might as well be really miserable. (It actually wasn’t too bad, though, thanks to the breeze and lower humidity.)
I made granola and caramel popcorn. I washed and chopped a bunch of kale. I rolled out a pie crust. I strained a half gallon of iced coffee. I chopped leftover grilled veggies from last night’s supper and cooked a pot of farro to go with them (along with a can of Costco chicken and chopped fresh parsley and basil from the garden) for lunch. And I made a cucumber mint cooler concentrate.
Watering the garden this morning, I’d discovered a ripe cucumber — I had no idea they were close to being ready! — and ended up picking a big bowlful. And then I remembered that David had just posted a recipe for cucumber cooler.
When my husband came home for lunch, I gave him a sample. “It’s really good,” he said, sounding surprised. (The man has a knack for making compliments sound like criticisms.)
Tonight we’re watching Hamilton (HAMILTON!!!!). I made the caramel popcorn specifically for our viewing party, and we’ll have giant bowls of chilled watermelon, too. And now there’s this cooler to go with.
Cucumber Mint Cooler
Adapted from David Lebovitz
2-3 garden cucumbers OR 1 large English seedless cucumber
2 limes, zest and juice
¾ cup fresh mint leaves, packed
½ cup sugar
pinch of salt
optional: triple sec, vodka, gin, tequila, seltzer, etc.
Wash and peel the cucumbers. Cut them lengthwise into quarters and cut out the seeds. (If using the English cucumber, there’s no need to peel or seed it.) Rough chopped, you’ll have about 2-3 cups of cucumber.
Put the cucumber chunks into a blender, along with the zest and juice from both limes, mint, salt, and sugar. Blend until smooth, about a minute or so. Store the concentrate in the fridge until ready to drink.
To serve, mix the concentrate with equal parts water, stir well, and pour over ice. Add boozes, if desired. (Triple sec for me, please.)
This same time, years previous: Vieques!, the quotidian (7.3.17), the quotidian (7.4.16), creamy cauliflower sauce, our 48-hour date, linguine with shrimp and cilantro-lime pesto, spaghetti with swiss chard, raisins, and almonds.