Veggie Quest is coming to you live from the beach this week with a spa-fresh end-of-summer treat: cucumber-lime popsicles with fresh mint and cantaloupe.
After breakfast, it’s off to the beach to soak up warm sun and swim in the surf before hitting the pool. Then come evening, hubby and I make our way to the pier to catch grumpy blue crabs for dinner, before waking up to do it all over again.
So it’s hard to believe that we’ll have to leave our island paradise TODAY. Not because our vacation time will have run out, mind you, but because as of Saturday morning Hurricane Irene is predicted to be thrashing the island with pounding surf and screaming winds, which—as you can imagine—we won’t be sticking around to see. Apparently storms of her caliber only hit the Outer Banks once a decade, and we managed to time it with part of our week-long trip—lucky us!
But until we evacuate, you’d better believe I’m going to savor all the beach goodness I can—including these refreshing popsicles.
Beachin’ Cucumber Mint Popsicles with Cantaloupe
The inspiration for these treats came to me earlier in the summer when I had the most incredible cocktail at Founding Farmers in DC, an “Organic Cucumber Delight.” While the drink’s name wasn’t too inspiring, its refreshing combination of cucumber and fresh mint with cantaloupe was. I had originally planned to recreate the cocktail at home, but since I just don’t drink very much, I decided to turn it into a popsicles instead. With a little online research and the help of my mom’s mint simple syrup recipe and the expert taste buds of both family and friends, I cobbled together some seriously refreshing pops. I hope they bring a little bit of the beach into your home as you enjoy the last days of summer!
Place sugar and mint in a small saucepan; muddle mint leaves in sugar. Add ½ cup water, stir, and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil until sugar is completely dissolved. (About a minute.)
- ½ cup + ⅓ cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 Tbsp loosely packed fresh mint leaves
- Juice of 1 large lime (more to taste)
- 1 cucumber
- ½ cup tiny cantaloupe cubes (about ½-inch)
- Place sugar and mint in a small saucepan; muddle mint leaves in sugar. Add ½ cup water, stir, and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil until sugar is completely dissolved. (About a minute.)
- Remove from heat and allow syrup to cool. Once cooled, pour through a strainer to remove leaves.
- Peel, seed, and roughly chop cucumber.
- Place cucumber, mint syrup, lime juice, and ⅓ cup water in a food processor. Process until smooth. Add more water or lime juice to taste. (Makes about 2 cups of cucumber-lime goodness to pour in your popsicle molds.)
- Sprinkle a few cubes of cantaloupe in the bottom of each popsicle mold, then fill each mold with cucumber mixture. Freeze for four hours or until set.
As a variation, my brother suggested swapping watermelon cubes for the cantaloupe cubes, and/or mixing watermelon juice in with the mint simple syrup. Sounds tasty to me!