Monday, August 12, 2013

Watermelon Mint Chiller Juice (2 Ways) + The Great Outdoors

Holy cannoli, it's hot this summer!  I find myself doing more yoga and less running because it's just too darn hot to be outside.  This weekend, to escape the heat, we got out of the city and relaxed in the great outdoors.  We went camping! (i.e. we rented a cabin and played outside all's really the only way to camp with a two year old!)

We had an absolute blast.  I had the best intentions to take pictures of all the vegan deliciousness I was eating over the weekend, but real life proved more important than photos of food.

 Notice the little hand, stealing my pre-breakfast snack!! Sneaky little booger! =)

I got a picture of my quick, early morning pre-hike snack, a fresh fruit medley I brought for snacking, and my fire-side delight...Octoberfest!  That's right people, Fall is almost always know its close when the fall craft beers start making their grocery store debut!

In addition to hiking, my toddler learned to "feesh" and enjoyed dancing and running around outside to his little heart's content!  I do love the great outdoors!  I can't wait until he's old enough to go tent camping.  I just wasn't quite brave enough to try it just yet!  Maybe next summer =)

As I started my week back in 100+ degree weather, I was missing the cool, crisp weather of northern Arizona.  I had a hankerin' for a cool summer treat, but I also had to get my daily juice fix in.  Enter, the Watermelon Mint Chiller Juice.  I made this green, crisp delight two ways.  One with a subtle mint flavor and one with a strong, seriously mojito-reminiscent mint bite.  Either way, this juice will leave you hydrated and refreshed...just what you need in the heat of the summah!

Watermelon Mint Chiller Juice (mellow mint version)
*Makes two to three 16oz glasses of juice, depending on your juicer.

3 cucumbers, peeled
1/5 pineapple, cut into chunks or strips
1/4 small, seedless watermelon, cut into chunks
2 celery stalks
3 large kale leaves
1/2 cup fresh mint (*See recipe for stronger flavor below)
1/4 cup coconut water

To Make:
1. Place all ingredients except the coconut water through the juicer.  *Note, if you have a high speed juicer, you will want to make the stronger mint version below, as the mint can clog up the juicer.  Running the mint through in this recipe is recommended for slower motion, masticating, or auger juicers.

2. After all your fruits and veggies are run through your juicer, pour the coconut water through the juicer, while the juicer is still running, and into your glass/pitcher.   Garnish with a sprig of mint, and enjoy! =)

Now, this recipe isn't quite fresh enough for true mint lovers (husband..*cough cough*).  If that is the case, follow this version below for a real summer treat!
*Note, this version tastes yummy with a splash of rum...think super healthy mojito...just sayin'!

Watermelon Mint Chiller Juice (mega mint version)
*Makes two to three 16oz glasses of juice, depending on your juicer

Same as above, but reduce fresh mint to 1/4 cup

To Make:
1. In your juice container or individual glasses, muddle the mint with 1 tbsp of the coconut water until smashed but not pulverized.  You just want to crush it a bit to release the flavor.  If you don't have a muddler, the handle end of any kitchen utensil will work in a pinch (just make sure you aren't holding the blade of a knife to use the handle, etc!)

2. Push the cukes, pineapple, watermelon, celery and kale through the juicer.  Break celery and kale into smaller chunks if you have a slow motion juicer to avoid tangles and backups.

3. Once all your veggies have gone through the juicer, with the juicer still running, pour the coconut water through the juicer and into your glass!

4.  If you had your muddled mint on the bottom of your juice catching container, mix with a large spoon to blend the mint flavor.  If you put the mint in individual glasses, pour the juice over the mint and mix with a spoon to disperse the mint flavor.

Note:  This juice is best enjoyed fresh!  Mint tends to bruise and blacken over time once it's muddled.

We hope you had a fantastic weekend!  Stay cool and hydrated this summer =)

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