drinks

cucumber + lime fizzball (with a hint of mint)

January 18, 2013

cucumber + lime fizzball

Can’t….write. I don’t know what ‘s wrong with me.

Lie: yes I do. I’m far too excited about this whole RFT “Best Food Blog” finalist and upcoming awards ceremony thing. I realize the other finalists are probably way chill, but it’s safe to say they’re all cooler than I am. I’m just over here being totally nerded out about it.

So: writing escapes me at the moment. But making food does not, and there’s no reason to make you wait for another fizzball.

cucumber lime and mint fizzball.

We enjoyed the lemon-ginger fizzball so much around here that I decided to throw another one at you. This one has a deliciously light and sweet (but not too sweet) flavor of cucumber and lime, with a little zing of mint thrown in for good measure. You could do this with ginger ale, but I liked this with sparkling mineral water; it gives it a crisp finish with no pesky extra calories.

I’ll remember how to write this weekend, perhaps. I’m sure I can put on my cool face. I mean, right? (sigh)

Adapted as a variation on my lemon-ginger fizzball.

Cucumber + Lime Fizzball (with a hint of mint)

  • 1 large english cucumber, grated with box grater
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup lime juice (about 6-8 limes depending on their size and juiciness)
  • zest of 1 lime
  • 6 mint leaves, chiffonade, plus more small whole leaves for garnish
  • 1 bottle of your favorite sparkling mineral water

In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring water and sugar to a simmer and stir until all the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and add the shredded cucumber. Set aside and let cool for 15-20 minutes.

Using a fine mesh strainer, strain the syrup into a large, shallow glass baking dish; discard the cucumber solids. Add the lime juice, zest, and mint, and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into a shallow glass dish; I use an 8 x 8 Pyrex dish. Cover tightly and freeze the syrup for 6-8 hours until firm.

Psst: worried about freeze time? Make it the day before; then there’s zero chance your cucumber lime ice will be slushy.

Remove the cucumber lime mixture from the freezer (it should be icy but will cut easily) and let stand for 5 minutes. Use a large thin knife to slice the mixture in half, chunk up the half you’re using, and add the chunks to your food processor (or blender) along with 4 cups of crushed ice. Pulse until it resembles fluffy snow, using a spoon every so often to scrape down the sides.

Once it is evenly chopped and snowy, use a large ice cream scoop to scoop snowballs out, pressing against the sides of your machine of choice so you have big, round snow. Place in martini glasses, and make enough snowballs in each one to pile above the rim, like a super-sophisticated ice cream cone. Pour mineral water slowly around the sides and over top the snowball pile, filling the glass. Garnish with mint leaves.

Yum.

Serve immediately, probably with cute drink picks or tiny straws so your guests can stir it up a little, slushie-style.

Each half-batch you whiz up makes 6 glasses, depending on the size of your snowballs, for a total of 12 servings per whole batch.

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11 Comments

  • Reply sara January 18, 2013 at 6:41 pm

    Lovely! I am stashing this recipe away for when I get warmer weather in my area…it looks so refreshing! :)

    • Reply shannon January 25, 2013 at 3:45 pm

      very refreshing! Almost like a little bit of summer in the winter. This will make a good poolside drink, for sure. :)

  • Reply Jen @JuanitasCocina January 18, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Fizzballs are so effing awesome they need no words. You’re ahead of the curve, dahling.

    I vote orange next!

    • Reply shannon January 25, 2013 at 3:45 pm

      i’ve already started crafting an orange-themed fizzball, just for you, my dear. so…many…ideas.

  • Reply Ashley January 20, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    Nerd out and be excited! You totally should be and you should totally be The Finalist. As in, win the award. I’m sending good thoughts and luck your way!

    Also the cucubmer-lime-mint flavor axis sounds perfect for spring and summer. My mind is racing with ideas for variations, like melon-lime-mint or grapefruit-ginger or…something savory – tomato-mint, maybe? It’s such a versatile recipe. Ah, I’m excited! Fizzballs for all!

    • Reply shannon January 25, 2013 at 3:51 pm

      well, i completely nerded out; as you can see, i was SO nerded out i’m just now able to concentrate on replying :). the good thoughts worked!

      it was very summery, like in the way mojitos are summery, i think. although certainly if you’re a cucumber water drinker as i sometimes am, it can translate to winter. Very refreshing, no matter what season. Ooooo, grapefruit ginger! Tomato mint (or even basil?)! You’re a total fizzballer. i can tell. :)

      psst: strawberry basil…

      • Reply Ashley January 26, 2013 at 9:50 pm

        dang. you nailed it. strawberry basil it is!

  • Reply Jennie @themessybakerblog January 21, 2013 at 10:41 am

    I would be totally “nerded out” too if I were you, so much so that I’d be doing one of my not-so-sexy dance moves in the kitchen–gettin’ down with my bad self.

    This fizzball looks amazing!

    • Reply shannon January 25, 2013 at 3:53 pm

      oh man, GIRL: i was a complete geek about my nomination! still am…there were dance moves. believe me…although i’m not sure anyone would have noticed the “dance” in my moves. :)

      thanks! i’m starting to really love thinking about different flavor combos for them. I’m prepping for summer when i can enjoy fizzballs by the pool.

  • Reply movita beaucoup January 23, 2013 at 3:45 am

    Cucumber, lime and mint? All three of my favourites in one delightful treat? Brilliant.

    Just so you know, it’s hip to be square. So let your inner nerd run free…

    • Reply shannon January 25, 2013 at 4:27 pm

      My inner nerd has been running free for WEEKS now. The neighbors called the cops at one point, i think. Whoops. :)

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