Monday, August 9, 2010

Life Savers--Apple Juice with Mint and Honey Lemonade

Around the world, August is probably the most popular vacation month of the year. Not only, traditionally, in France and Italy, but even in the culinary blogosphere. Blog hosts leave on vacation, close their blogs for the entire month, and later share more pictures of the places they visit than recipes. Check Mowielicious, What's for lunch, Honey?, Jul's Kitchen, and some others.

Well, I am on vacation too, far away from DC, at the Masurian Lakes, my native region in the north east of Poland. But even here I cannot forget about my blog and not only do I collect new recipes and copy the old ones, some of which I forgot about a long time ago, but also continue to write and--despite many technical difficulties and the lack of a decent camera--try to post new blogs from time to time.

I found a recipe book that I created more than thirty years ago. It was my culinary bible for many years. I wrote down in it and clipped out into it the recipes from all over the world, which were then so rarely appearing in Polish magazines. There are even traces of whipped eggs, also more than thirty years old, that I splashed on my notebook when I was using it to make some of the cakes that became very popular with my friends and family. You would not believe how many of these recipes I recreate at least once a month at my American home. And you would not believe from how many different cuisines of the world they come from. There you find the Croatian pumpkin, Flemish beef, Czech dumplings, German Quarktorte, Cypriot noodles, and hundreds of others. I will try to share the most interesting ones in my posts, starting this fall. But, until then, I also will mostly write rather than cook, but hopefully not only for those who just like to read about food.

Anyway, it is very hot here which means that not only fruits and vegetables are at their peak and taste great but, most of all, we drink a lot.

My younger son is addicted to a very Polish summer drink, which is apple juice with mint. It is very simple to make but I have not found it anywhere else, even though apple juice is probably even more popular for instance in the United States than here. I will try to imitate something similar by adding to it fresh mint leaves from my garden, or by mixing apple juice with cold mint tea--this should work one way or another.

Honey lemonade is another very refreshing drink for these boiling hot days. Honey is very popular in Poland and considered very healthy, as opposed to sugar. Our bees make it from many different flowers and in different colors. At this time of the year, honey is very fresh, wonderfully running, and aromatic. I will not specify any proportions for this lemonade as there is nothing simpler than this. Just squeeze into a pitcher of spring water a few lemons and/or limes and add some running honey, according to your taste. Chill it down with a few ice cubes and enjoy the respite this wonderful homemade drink provides on an unbearably hot August day.

No comments: