“Because every healthy recipe deserves to be delicious.” – Motto of The Recipe ReDux
I was eager to contribute to this month’s Recipe ReDux theme of “Summer Beverage” as this particular summer, I’ve been working on kicking the diet soda habit (so now it’s more of a weekly thing vs. a daily thing but still working on it.)
Inspired by the traditional Mexican agua frescas or “fresh waters” that are becoming more mainstream, my refrigerator has been overloaded with little Tupperware containers of various fruit juices.
My assorted juices come from the remnants of a cut watermelon, half of lemon leftover from a recipe or extra lime wedges that didn’t make it into a gin & tonic – all juiced with blender or my handy dandy wooden OXO reamer and stored in the fridge.
A supply of homemade simple syrup and steady stash of San Pellegrino and I’m ready to mix up a fizzy fruit mocktail whenever the mood hits.
A recent Twitter chat on basil (#spicechat on the 1st Wednesday of every month at 4 pm ET if you want to join in the fun!) got me thinking about experimenting with herb infused simple syrups. It was as easy as tossing in a handful of basil leaves in the pan with equal parts water and sugar then bringing to a boil for about a minute. I pureed a super ripe cantaloupe melon and a new summer drink was born.Print
Cantaloupe Basil Agua Fresca Fizz
Take cantaloupe juice and fresh basil to make an agua fresca – a popular Mexican beverage
- Yield: Serves 4 1x
- ½ cup water
- 15 basil leaves, torn
- ½ large cantaloupe (about 3 ¼ cups cubed)
- 24 ounces seltzer
- Basil leaves for garnish
- In a small pan over medium heat, add sugar, water and basil. Stir frequently until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil, let boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and let sit for one hour. Remove basil leaves or run through a strainer.
- In a blender, add cantaloupe. Blend until smooth. Pour through a fine mesh strainer. (Yields about 2 cups of strained cantaloupe juice.) For each serving, mix ½ cup cantaloupe juice, ¾ cup seltzer and 4 teaspoons basil simple syrup. Garnish with 1 or 2 basil leaves in the drink.
- *If you prefer no bubbles, replace seltzer with plain water as they do in Mexico. For an adult beverage, replace seltzer with Prosecco.