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Cool down with summer drinks

By on July 24, 2008

photo by sleepyneko
strawberry lemonade

Ice-cold drinks are refreshing during the summer. Whether you’re lounging outside alone or serving them to friends, they’re the perfect way to cool down and quench your thirst. When serving guests, instead of using your typical plastic pitcher, spare milk jug and plastic cups, pick up a two- to five-gallon glass beverage server set. They help create a beautiful display and are practical to dispense drinks because guests can help themselves. They’re easy to refill, too. If you find them too pricey, you don’t have to sacrifice elegance. Look for secondhand vintage or collectible glass pitchers and tumbler sets. They’re frugal luxuries and green, too. Remember: When someone is always looking to save a buck, they’re simply cheap. Frugality isn’t about being the cheapest. It involves maximizing the use of your money and being less wasteful.

If you are used to sipping lemonade and iced tea, you can add homemade fruit-juice-flavored ice cubes to give it zing without diluting the flavor. Think: Frozen orange juice or pineapple cubes with lemonade or frozen lemonade or apple-juice cubes with tea. You can crush fresh basil with sugar and add it to lemonade, or add a dash of cinnamon to your iced tea, too. Or try the following drink recipes for a new spin on old-time favorites.

Strawberry Lemonade

3 cups water, cold
1 quart fresh strawberries
1 cup sugar
3 lemons, squeezed, or 3/4 cup lemon juice
2 cups club soda, cold
lemon slices for garnish

Place water, strawberries and sugar in a blender and blend until smooth. Stir in lemon juice and club soda. Add lemon for garnish. Serve immediately.

Lemon-Berry Punch

1/4 cup sweetened lemonade drink mix
2 cups cold water
1/3 cup cran-raspberry juice
3/4 cup lemon-lime soda

In a pitcher, combine the drink mix, water and cran-raspberry juice. Stir in soda. Serve immediately.

Mint-Chocolate Iced Tea

8 ounces water
1 peppermint tea bag
3 to 4 tablespoons chocolate syrup
sugar, to taste
2 tablespoons nondairy coffee creamer
crushed ice
whipped cream

Heat water on stovetop or in microwave. Place tea bag in hot water and let steep for 2 minutes. Remove tea bag. Stir in chocolate syrup, sugar and creamer. Serve over ice. Top with whipped cream.

Limeade Tea

5 cups boiling water
5 tea bags
1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar
1 (6-ounce) can frozen limeade concentrate, thawed

In a pan, boil water. Add tea bags to pan and remove from heat. Cover and steep 5 minutes. Remove tea bags. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Stir in limeade concentrate. Pour into pitcher. Refrigerate until chilled. Serve over ice.

Coffee Cooler

2 teaspoons instant-coffee granules
1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
sugar, to taste
2 teaspoons cold water
1-1/2 cups cold milk
1 teaspoon chocolate syrup

Put the first four ingredients into a blender. Blend until smooth. Add the milk and syrup and pulse blend until well blended. Serve over ice.
Optional: Use a shaker instead of a blender.

One Comment

  1. Saule

    7/18/2010 at 2:03 pm

    This is a great recipe for a pitcher of iced coffee – it’s easy to adjust it to fit your tastes – use plain milk instead of chocolate, adjust the amount of milk, etc. I keep a pitcher of this in the fridge, ready to drink.

    Iced Coffee Latte

    By BecauseofHim on November 08, 2004


    6 Reviews

    * timer
    * Prep Time: 10 mins
    * Total Time: 10 mins min
    * Serves: 0

    About This Recipe

    “Living in Florida… iced coffee is the way to go. This is an easy recipe and one you’ll want to keep.”

    o 1/2 cup instant coffee granules
    o 1/2 cup boiling water
    o 1 (14 ounce) can condensed milk
    o 2 cups cold water
    o 1 quart lowfat chocolate milk
    o 1 to taste ice cubes


    1. Add boiling water to coffee.
    2. Whisk in condensed milk.
    3. Add cold water.
    4. Pour coffee into pitcher and add chocolate milk.
    5. Chill 1 hour.

    © 2010 All Rights Reserved.

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