A bit of a digression here.

We’ve had some real scorchers here this summer.    Friday and Saturday I had to be outdoors almost all day: getting ready for the Farmers’ Market on Friday (digging potatoes, onions) and Saturday, at the market.  Both days were 90+ ° F  and I guzzled Gatorade and water like both were going out of style. I don’t really like Gatorade, but I drink it because it works when I’m outdoors and sweating like a dripping faucet.   Sunday I was lucky enough to be able to stay indoors!

Today I was just doing chores around the house. It was nice enough to have the windows open (thermometer on the back porch reading a mere 83 ° F). In addition to the usual water for thirst, I wanted something (NOT Gatorade) with a little zip to drink. Bored with plain water, I certainly did not want to go to the grocery store and buy flavored water because to me most of the zero-calorie beverages have a very chemical, strange taste, and  the controversy over the quality of bottled waters.   Iced tea was just not appealing either.

Standing on the deck looking at the herbs, I found inspiration in the emerald green leaves of the mint that grows happily in a pot there.  I took about a dozen mint leaves and one fairly large stevia leaf (Stevia rebaudiana ‘AC™ GIIA11’ originally obtained from Richter’s Herb Specialists).  I bruised all the leaves with a pestle, added a cup of water, microwaved it for two minutes, and diluted it in a half-gallon jug (with filtered tap water).  Adding ice, I had a lightly flavored glass of water that was very refreshing to drink.Here is another refreshing-sounding drink recipe for this really hot weather.

Heat makes me want cool refreshing things but they must have something a to satisfy my need for protein.  A  friend posted a “recipe” for watermelon and feta cheese salad with mint.  I’ve eaten so much of it in the last few days.  Needs no extra dressing or anything like that. The flavor synergy between the mint and the watermelon is awesome!  Watermelon is such a great hot-weather food that I’ve been on the lookout for other watermelon things.  This watermelon lemonade sounds great too.  A local restaurant here had the watermelon/feta/mint combination on the menu with a buttermilk-lime dressing.  As tempting as that was on the evening that I ate there, I passed on that because I had been eating the other version for the last two days.  The addition of the citrus made me wonder about adding some mint to the watermelon lemonade watermelon to the mint water (above) for a summer quaff.  Another thing to try before the summer is over.

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