Georgia Grown Chef Olivia Rader showed Made In Georgia Festival attendees how to make this easy and refreshing drink with some of the unique products available at the festival. She selected Biron Tea’s Peach Blossom Black Tea and Peach Honeybush Tea to complement the canteloupe, Built By Bees’ Ginger-Infused Honey for a little zing, and Farm2Cocktail’s Cucumber Mint Shrub. Aguas frescas are a category of homemade beverage popular throughout Mexico that is based on fruit (or other ingredients), blended with a sweetener and fresh water and strained (or not). There are endless flavor combinations for aguas frescas, so feel free to use this recipe to swap out different ingredients, taking note of the core elements that comprise it – one or more fruits or veg (canteloupe, cucumber), a sweetener (the honey, the sweetener in the shrub), maybe an acidic ingredient (the vinegar in the shrub) to balance out the sweetness, and water to dilute it. Keep in mind the sweetness of your chosen fruit when considering the amount of sweetener or balancing acidity, and that aguas frescas (literally “fresh waters”) do not have to be super sweet to be perfectly thirst-quenching on a hot summer day.
- 2 Sachets Biron Peach Blossom Black Tea or Peach Honeybush Tea (or one of each)
- 1 1/2 cups cucumber, peeled and seeded, roughly diced (or 1 English cucumber, peeled and diced)
- 5 cups diced cantaloupe
- Handful of mint leaves
- 3 tbsp ginger infused honey
- ½ cup cucumber mint shrub
- Sliced cucumber, cantaloupe, and mint sprigs, for garnish (optional)
Bring ½ cup water to a boil. Remove from heat. Place tea bags in a 2-cup glass measuring cup and pour water over. Let steep for 3 minutes, then add ice until you reach the 1 cup line. Stir to melt ice slightly, and set aside to let ice continue to melt.
Place diced cantaloupe and cucumber in the pitcher of a blender. Add mint leaves, ginger-infused honey, shrub and cooled green tea. Blend to puree completely. Strain through a fine mesh strainer. Serve with cucumber slice, cantaloupe, and mint sprig.