I confess that this is the time of year when I want to spend as little time in the kitchen as possible. This week’s recipes reflect that, and all include ways to incorporate tart lemons and limes into a refreshing, easy meal. These include an icy adult drink, Asian noodle salad and a cool, creamy dessert.
I recently tried these slushies at a friend’s house and was hooked from the first sip, especially when I saw how easy the drinks were to make. No juicing is required and no tedious coating of salt on the rims of the glass. All the ingredients are blitzed together in a blender and the limes can even be peeled ahead of time and stored in the freezer.
For our main course, crunchy peanuts and curly cucumber spirals are combined with tasty udon noodles coated in a silky sauce. Play with the level of spiciness and saltiness to make it to your liking. If you don’t have a spiralizer, simply slice the cucumber thinly. This dish is great on its own and also pairs really well with grilled salmon or chicken with enough peanut ginger dressing for dipping.
You might want to make a few of these frozen yogurt desserts for emergencies. A serrated-edge grapefruit spoon works well for scooping out the lemon, which you can freeze for other recipes.
Experiment with different yogurt flavors and add berries to the filling or simply use as a garnish. Other topping options include mint leaves, rainbow sprinkles, grated coconut, or a drizzle of fruity syrup.
I hope these ideas work well to keep you cool!
Strawberry Lime Slushies
4 limes, 3 peeled and 1 thinly sliced
1/4 cup honey or agave syrup
3-4 cups strawberries or raspberries
1 cup of tequila
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
4 cups of ice cubes
Peel three of the limes, slicing off the top and bottom just enough to reveal the fruit underneath the pith. Cut the remaining zest and pulp of the lime into wide strips. Thinly slice the last lime for the garnish.
Place peeled limes in a blender; add all other ingredients except ice and mix until combined. Add the ice in batches and continue blending until smooth. Pour into glasses and garnish with lime slices. Yield: 4 servings
Peanut Noodle Salad with Cucumbers
1 pound frozen or 8 ounces dried udon noodles
1-2 (14 ounces) large cucumbers
2-4 (1 cup) green onions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup coriander leaves, chopped
1/2 cup roasted peanuts, chopped
1/3 cup peanut ginger dressing (see below), plus more to taste
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the noodles according to package directions, drain, rinse under cold water and let dry. Spiralize or thinly slice cucumbers and remove excess moisture with kitchen paper.
Gently toss noodles with 1/3 cup dressing to coat thoroughly. Add cucumbers, spring onions, cilantro and peanuts. Throw again. Taste and add more dressing if needed. Refrigerate until the flavors have blended. Serve with extra dressing, cilantro and peanuts. Yield: 4 servings
Peanut Ginger Dressing
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce, e.g. B. Sambal Oelek, optional
Flaky Sea Salt
In a medium bowl, whisk all ingredients together, adding a tablespoon of water if needed. Taste and add more lime juice and salt to taste. While the dressing is sitting, it can be thinly thickened with a tablespoon or two of water until it reaches the desired consistency. This will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Frozen lemon cups
5 large lemons
3 cups Greek lemon yogurt
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons lemon zest
Seasonal berries (optional)
Garnishes like mint leaves and sprinkles
Scrub the lemons and juice and grate one of them. Cut off the bottom tips of the remaining four so they sit upright on serving plates. Cut off the tops, then use a serrated knife to cut around the inside of the lemon zest and scoop out the lemon flesh.
Whisk together the yogurt, honey, lemon juice and zest. Gently stir in berries if using. Pour the mixture into lemon peels and freeze for at least 6 hours. Garnish and serve. Yield: 4 servings
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