Saturday, July 3, 2010

Get Your Summer Drink On

Hello, hello.  I'd like to say that the last month has been frenzied and frantic, thus explaining my lack of any new posts in quite some time.  However, just the opposite is true--the last month has been a slow and lazy wind-down to another school year.  Final projects, calculating year-end grades, graduations and their accompanying parties and festivities.  And that's about it.  No good excuse on my end.

The weather is decidedly warmer and summer is upon us.  Just now the whole world seems to be teeming in the park across the street.  Charcoal grill aromas wafting through the air.  Friends help one another parallel park in spots that perhaps are not precisely big enough.  Dill pickle spears strewn across the sidewalk without clear cause--not such a glorious end for them.  And tomorrow the 4th.  Huzzah.

What better time for a refreshing beverage?  None, I assert!  Fortunately, I am here offering up two delicious drink selections.  First, the perfect daytime fizzly: a Campari orange spritzer.  (By the way, now would be a good time to confess that I purchased yet another Barefoot Contessa cookbook, Back to Basics, where I happily stumbled across this drink.)  It's just a little boozier than freshly squeezed lemonade and more refreshing than an evening cocktail.

Take a tall glass, fill it with several ice cubes.  Pour in 1/4 cup Campari (I used Aperol because it was what we had on hand.  Worked great.)  Add 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 1.5 juicing oranges per drink).  Fill the rest of the glass with sparkling or soda water and add an orange slice for garnish if it pleases your fancy.

Second drink: banana milkshake.  If you do not have bitters or juicing oranges on hand, and do not want to go trundling about town to locate them, I suggest this option.  Or, if it is breakfast time, or, if you are not yet of legal drinking age.  These are all good reasons to opt for the banana milkshake.  This is a childhood favorite of mine, one that my mom would whip up when we had accumulated a fair number of almost-gone-bad bananas in the freezer.  And, aside from the general refreshing benefits of any frozen drink, this one provides the added benefit of putting to use the bananas that ripen too quickly in the warm summer weather.  I kid you not that I brought home a green bunch of bananas last Saturday, and by Monday they were still green and had brown banana dots all over indicating their over-ripeness.  Sure enough, peeled one open and it was beyond ripe.  Into the freezer the whole bunch went.

Okay, so for this fruity treat you'll need a blender--hand held or traditional.  Into the blender throw 1 frozen (peeled) banana.  Add at least 1/2 cup milk, more if the milkshake is too thick.  Throw in a bit of vanilla extract, maybe 1/4-1/2 teaspoon.  Blend.  Pour.  Straw.  Enjoy.  For a protein boost, add peanut butter.  (Yum!)  For a sweet tooth, add some chocolate syrup.  All good options.

Stay cool and enjoy the holiday.  Happy independence.

1 comment:

  1. You're the best. I love your posts especially when I'm in them. HA! Let's try the orange juice one here. :)