On Saturday I spent the day doing pre-production for some fun photography projects I’m working on. I can’t wait to share them with you! I really love pre-production days – shopping for groceries and props is great, and I love seeing a shoot come together. It’s even nicer when I’m sans kids and can concentrate better on what I’m doing. I must have gone to seven or eight different places, and I stopped at World Market twice! I’d been feeling like I needed to spruce up my prop cupboard for summer anyway, so while I was there I grabbed a bunch of new linens, small bowls, and glassware. But it was at the Asian market, my second-to-last stop, that I came up with an idea for this Cucumber Lime Slush with Thai Basil. And I confess, I am in love, and I want never-ending pitchers of it all summer long.
My neighborhood Asian market is one of my favorite places to shop. It’s never crowded and I don’t feel sheepish asking questions about the different produce and ingredients that are new to me. The woman who usually works the front counter is always very, very helpful and fun to talk to. She always asks me what I’m making, especially when I load up on as much mint and Thai basil as I can. It’s usually for a salad, I tell her. She wasn’t there on Saturday, so I chatted with the nice man who educated me on the bitter melon leaves I was buying. (I thought they were pea shoots and leaves. Ha!)
He pointed me in the direction of the much less expensive green papaya vs. the astronomically priced green Atulfo mangoes for a salad I am making. As he weighed out my bag of Thai basil, I eyed the fresh summer rolls and sauce he was selling, and thought about how much I love Thai food. Thai cucumber salad is always a good idea, I mused to myself. I knew I had two cucumbers at home in the fridge just begging to be paired up with lime and Thai basil just as soon as possible. When I got into my hot, hot car, I realized I needed to turn those three things – cucumber, lime, and Thai basil – into an icy slush. And last night, I made it happen.
Don’t you love stories about how recipes come to be? There’s always a story! So here is my new favorite summer drink, Cucumber Lime Slush with Thai Basil, and it came about from a quick jaunt to my favorite Asian market. Let me tell you, this slush is pretty darn sweet and refreshing. We actually ended up cutting the slush with a little sparkling water. And let me tell you, even more refreshing. Sigh. Now if only I was on a beach in Thailand somewhere sipping a big glassful . . .
If you didn’t catch my Lemonade 101 post on Design Mom last summer, I like to use an infused simple syrup when I’m making lemon or limeade. It’s really easy to do and adds a lot of flavor without being too overpowering. I don’t strain out the pulp from the cucumber either. It helps make the slush thicker, which I kind of like. Please, whatever you do, use fresh lime juice! I think we can all join hands and be grateful limes don’t cost as much as a plane ticket to Mexico anymore. :)
A few last things…
As I said, this slush is pretty sweet. The amount of sugar can definitely be halved, so I give you a range in the recipe directions. If you really like Thai basil, you can blend it right in with the cucumber and lime. Don’t like Thai basil at all? Substitute fresh mint. If you prefer a more adult beverage (wink, wink) I’m sure a little vodka would be great here.
Now go forth and make slushies and come back and tell me what you think!
Other slush recipes that look mighty refreshing:
Melon Berry Slush by me for Petit Elefant
Watermelon Slush from Damn Delicious
Mango Margarita Slush from Crunchy Creamy Sweet
Cherry Lemonade Slush from A Zesty Bite
Blueberry and Mango Wine Slush from Sweet Remedy
Pomegranate, Blueberry, Matcha Tea Slushy from Gourmande In The Kitchen
Watermelon Cucumber Slush from Henry Happened
Frozen White Peach Sangria Slushy from Always Order Dessert
Strawberry Pineapple Slushy from Chasing Cake
- 1/2 to 1 cup evaporated cane juice
- 1 cup water
- 1 sprig Thai basil
- 1 large cucumber, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
- 6 cups crushed ice
- extra slices of lime and cucumber, for garnish
- extra Thai basil, for garnish
- Combine cane juice and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Turn off heat and add the Thai basil. Let stand until completely cooled.
- Remove the basil from the syrup. Pour the syrup into a blender and add the remaining ingredients. (If your blender is too small, do this in two batches.)
- Pour into a pitcher, if desired, and serve.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Category: beverage