Hibiscus Cooler

Hibiscus Cooler

This recipe makes a large batch of hibiscus cooler (1 gallon). Plan on making this beverage the night before planning to serve — it will be extra “juicy” and delicious with the longer brewing time.

INGREDIENTS:
1 gallon fresh filtered water (+ 1 cup more water)
1 1/4 cup Hibiscus Cooler tisane
1 1/2 cups sugar, or more to taste*
Ice, mint and lemon slices, if desired

METHOD:
In a stockpot, bring water to a boil. Stir in tisane and remove from heat. Add sugar and stir until sugar dissolves. Allow mixture to stand until cool, then decant mixture into a large pitcher — do NOT strain! Refrigerate overnight.

Before serving, strain mixture into serving container using fine mesh strainer, pressing on solids gently to extract liquid. Discard solids — throw them in the garden, if you have one.

Taste for sweetness. Hibiscus flowers are extremely tart—add a little simple syrup to adjust sweetness, if needed.

Serve over ice and garnish with lemon slices and fresh mint sprigs, if desired.

TIP:
Make a simple syrup (1 part sugar : 1 part water) to keep on hand for sweetening. Once the beverage is cooled, added sugar will not dissolve. Place sugar and water in a saucepan and stir to combine. Bring mixture to a boil, boil one minute, and allow to cool. Decant into small pitcher.

VARIATIONS:

  • Split whole vanilla bean, scrape out seeds into warm tisane, and toss in the whole bean.
  • In a glass filled with ice, fill halfway with hibiscus cooler. Top with sparkling water and stir.

Watermelon Slushy

Watermelon juice with sliced fruit on white plate

This icy-cold slushy made with sweet watermelon is the perfect refreshment for hot summer days!

INGREDIENTS:

4 cups cubed seedless ripe, sweet watermelon
10 ice cubes
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup white sugar
2 small sprigs of fresh mint, leaves removed
1/8 teaspoon salt

METHOD:

Place watermelon and ice into a blender. Add lime juice, sugar, mint leaves and salt. Blend until smooth.

Serve immediately.

Watermelon Cooler

Watermelon lemonade

Here’s a refreshing change for a summertime drink that uses icy cold watermelon and limeade concentrate. Allow enough time to freeze the watermelon prior to preparing beverage.

INGREDIENTS:

1 small watermelon, cut into 1/2-inch cubes watermelon (8 cups)
1 1/2 cups ginger ale
1/3 cup water
1 can (6 oz) frozen limeade concentrate, thawed

METHOD:

Cut watermelon into cubes, discarding any seeds. Place watermelon cubes in 1-gallon resealable freezer plastic bag and place on small baking sheet. Arrange cubes into one layer and place in freezer. Freeze 8 hours.

When ready to make the beverage, remove frozen watermelon chunks from freezer and allow to stand at room temperature 15 minutes.

In blender, place HALF of each watermelon, ginger ale, water and limeade concentrate. Cover and blend on medium speed until smooth. Pour mixture into pitcher. Repeat with remaining ingredients and stir into mixture in pitcher. Serve immediately.