Summer Frozen Treats

There are plenty of interesting flavors that you might combine to create cooling drinks or frozen treats to help combat the summer heat. Most fruits will freeze nicely, then they pop right into the blender to create beverages, or may be returned to the freezer in ice trays or popsicle molds. The variety available seems boundless!

Simple-Syrup Ice
Use a one-to-one ration of water and sugar in a small saucepan, heating and stirring until the sugar is dissolved completely. Pout into a ready ice tray and freeze. The resulting ice cubes may be blended into any slushie or smoothy to add moisture and sweetness.

Infuse your simple-syrup with more flavor by adding mint leaves, vanilla, or orange zest during the heating process. You may choose to strain the liquid before freezing, or not, as preferred.

Kiwi-Lime Slushie
Serves 2-4
Ingredients:
1 kiwi, peeled, diced, frozen
1/4 honeydew melon, peeled, diced, frozen
1 cup limeaid
Agave nectar, if desired
Lime wedges

Toss frozen cubes of kiwi and honeydew into a blender, using just enough limeaid to create a frothy liquid. Add a dollop of agave nectar for extra sweetness, if desired. Pour into your glass, add a wedge of lime, and enjoy.

Watermelon-Coconut Slushie
Serves 2-4
Ingredients:
3 cups watermelon, seeded, cubed, frozen
1 cup canned coconut milk
1 cup coconut water
1 cup frozen watermelon juice or ice
Mint leaves

Mix all ingredients except mint in a blender until you get a smooth consistence. Add a few mint leaves and blend again just enough to chop them up, releasing the oils into your mixture. Pour and add a sprig of mint to each glass.

Lemon Mango Slushie
Serves 4-8
Ingredients:
2 cups mango, peeled, diced, frozen
Juice of 2 lemons
8oz simple-syrup ice cubes, plain or with lemon zest infusion

Blend all ingredients until smooth. Serve with a wedge of lemon.

Cucumber Pineapple Fizzy
Serves 2-4
Ingredients:
1/2 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded, sliced
1.5 cups pineapple, cubed, frozen
2 cup coconut water
1 cup ginger ale or coconut seltzer
4 basil leaves, fresh

Bend all ingredients until smooth. Garnish with fresh basil, sliced cucumber, and/or a wedge of pineapple as desired.

Remember that any of these fruity concoctions may be  to create flavorful ice cubes, or poured into molds with sticks to create popsicle-style frozen treats. Adding chunks of extra whole fruit will give additional textures to tantalize the tongue.

Try your favorite flavor combinations with any fleshy fruits and see what your family and friends like best!

–Ann Cathey

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