Cucumber is such a great refresher — rehydrating and soothing, no wonder that slices of fresh cucumber are placed over tired and puffy eyes to soothe them.
But did you know that the refreshing quality of cucumber extends to drinks too? Pureed cucumber is the perfect summer drink, I tell you. Combine it with sweet ripe mangoes and you double the pleasure.
But… but… cucumber is a vegetable. Well, drinks made from pureed vegetables have been the rage for years. But if you’re a stranger to vegetable drinks and the idea of pureed cucumber doesn’t sound all that appealing, well, here’s something you ought to know.
Although the cucumber is eaten as a vegetable, it is actually a fruit. Review your botany and be amazed. And when you stop thinking of the cucumber as a vegetable, then making it into a drink doesn’t sound so strange.
Here’s an introduction to cucumber drinks that won’t make you turn your head away. By mixing cucumbers with sweet mangoes, you get that cucumber freshness without that feeling that you’re drinking a vegetable-based puree.
Mango, Cucumber and Mint Smoothie
- 1 chilled cucumber
- 2 chilled mangoes
- plain simple syrup to taste (you may substitute sugar)
- juice of half a lime or lemon
- crushed ice
- 10 mint leaves
- Peel the cucumber. Split into halves vertically. Scrape off the seeds with a teaspoon. Cut the flesh into small cubes.
- Cut the mangoes, remove the stones and discard. Scoop out the flesh and cut into small cubes.
- Put the cucumber and mango cubes into the blender. Pour in the lime or lemon juice. Add the simple syrup or sugar (start with a tablespoonful; you can add more later, if needed).
- Add about half a cup of crushed ice into the blender. Process the mixture until the cucumber and mangoes are pureed. Taste. Add more syrup or sugar, if needed.
- Tear the mint leaves and throw into the blender. Blitz a few times to chop the leaves.
- Pour the smoothie into glasses. Garnish with whole mint leaves. Serve cold.