Bye-Bye Bounty, week 16: A chill drink for "chill" weather

Cool, juicy and perfect for the weather.

Cool, juicy and perfect for the weather. by Sarah Henning

Hi there, CSAers, hope you guys are doing well in this “cooler” weather. I know I’ve been enjoying these temps.

My garden, too, is pretty happy — it’s sort of perked up the past few days and looks a bit less parched, though, I still have no idea how local farmers have still been producing as well as they have. This summer has not been kind … as evidenced from the first two sentences of this blog referencing “cooler temps” and meaning in the 90s.

But I digress.

So, last week we got the following: A melon, chard, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and grapes.

Last week's haul.

Last week's haul. by Sarah Henning

It really was a great haul because each and every item could go into a variety of recipes. And though I know variety is the spice of life and all that jazz, I have a very hard time trying something new.

I am a “rut” person to a fault.

I’ve mentioned this before — how I have my favorites and make the same recipes over and over again not because I like being boring, but because I know exactly how I like things.

So, this week, I challenged myself to try something new. And you know what?

I have a new favorite.

One that is perfect to enjoy in this nice “cooler” weather. (HA.)

But first: Last week we ate the grapes out of hand, juiced the chard and cucumbers, made fajitas again with the peppers (remember what I said about being a rut person) and then had the grape tomatoes in yet another helping of tomato salad (again, shocking, I know).

Fajita veggies with black beans, chopped mango and peach salsa on a sprouted tortilla.

Fajita veggies with black beans, chopped mango and peach salsa on a sprouted tortilla. by Sarah Henning

Tomato salad ... yet again.

Tomato salad ... yet again. by Sarah Henning

Therefore, it was up to me to play with the melon. Try something new. I toyed around with what to do (I mean, I just like melon as is …), but after going out into the garden for inspiration, I figured out exactly what to do.

I’d combine the melon with leaves from my mint (spearmint) plant, which has bounced back from the brink in the cooler weather. I figured it would not only be a yummy combination, but that it would also show my dry little mint plant enough love that maybe it wouldn’t threaten to leave me again (I’ve killed my mint plants — spearmint, peppermint and chocolate mint — every single year I’ve had all three, despite the fact that garden books claim they are unkillable).

So, here’s what I came up with — a drink that’s been absolutely perfect to sip on the deck during our “cool” weather. And, if it’s not so cool? Don’t worry, it’ll chill you out so much, you might make it a nightly ritual (i.e. rut).

Mmmm, watermelon and mint.

Mmmm, watermelon and mint. by Sarah Henning

Minty Watermelon Cooler

4 cups roughly chopped watermelon (about half a small to medium watermelon)

3 sprigs mint (about ¾ tablespoon leaves when removed from the stem)

Tiny pinch sea salt

Put all ingredients in a blender.

Everybody in...

Everybody in... by Sarah Henning

The watermelon is wet enough that you should not have to add any water. Blend all ingredients until smooth.

So pretty and pink...

So pretty and pink... by Sarah Henning

When that’s done, pour the liquid through a metal strainer to remove any seed fragments or bits of mint that didn’t blend.

Through the strainer...

Through the strainer... by Sarah Henning

Pour the strained liquid into wine glasses or other small glasses. Serves 2.

What’d we get this week? More melon, peppers, tomatoes, summer squash, grapes, pears and a cucumber.

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