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Articles - Gourmet Pleasures:

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Thirst-quenchers for summer

When temperatures soar, it's time for refreshing homemade beverages. The best thing to drink is, as always, water. But a dash of lemon juice or elder-flower syrup will pep up your drink. Or try frozen melon cubes or fresh cucumber slices with fresh mint.

Ice-cold, homemade lemonade is the taste of summer

To make your own lemonade, boil up 100 ml water with 50 g sugar, cool and add freshly squeezed lemon juice. Then top up 750 ml ice-cold sparkling water and you have a delicious, low-calorie drink. If you find it tastes slightly bitter, add a pinch of salt. Instead of lemon juice, you can use orange, grapefruit or lime juice and also spices like ginger, and herbs like mint or sage.

An alcohol-free raspberry punch makes a special treat. To make it, simply mix raspberries with apple juice, raspberry syrup, cranberry nectar and sparkling water. Chill or serve over icecubes.

Children – and grown-ups – will love a coconut milkshake made by foaming up bananas, pineapples, coconut milk and milk. Decorate with coconut flakes and a sprinkling of cinnamon.

Iced coffee and tea

Iced coffee or tea will cool you down and wake you up on a hot day. To make iced tea, brew a pot of strong tea, let it cool, then keep it in the fridge. To serve add fruit juice, honey, ice cubes or maybe dilute it with sparkling mineral water. Float slices of orange or pineapple in the glass for decoration. There are several ways to make iced coffee but the basis is always strong coffee that has been chilled. Some people add sugar, some people don't. some people like milk others prefer cream or simply a blob of vanilla icecream. There's nothing like iced coffee to give you that holiday feeling!

Ice cubes with edible flowers – daisies, sage flowers, violas and borage – frozen into them are a sure eye-catcher. Use them in all sorts of drinks, but make a special drink with a fennel frond, a handful of flower petals, lemon juice, apple juice and sparkling water and then float your flower-filled ice cubes in the jug.

Source: Heike Kreutz, www.aid.de