Sparkling Cucumber Basil Lemonade | Kale and Caramel Cookbook

sparkling cucumber and basil lemonade | apt 2b baking co
sparkling cucumber and basil lemonade | apt 2b baking co
sparkling cucumber and basil lemonade | apt 2b baking co

I spent a good few hours in the backyard this week, sweeping up the leftovers from fall and winter - getting ready for the few glorious weeks when the weather is warm enough to hang outside, but the mosquitos haven't hatched yet...I am a mosquito magnet and our backyard seems to be a hotbed of bug action in the warm months which makes it a not so fun place to hang.

For whatever reason we couldn't seem to get ourselves together enough to host people out back last year, but I am determined to host a few get togethers in the coming weeks. That means lots of good reasons to try delicious new recipes - and big batch cocktails. I love a sparkling sipper and this refreshing drink from Lily's new cookbook caught my eye immediately as I flipped through. Now, this recipe isn't a cocktail as written, but I could see a heavy pour of gin fitting in quite nicely with these tasting ingredients. 

Lily's new book is broken down into 12 chapters that each highlight a flower or herb in fresh and delicious recipes including lots beauty products like masks, body scrubs, and the like but it is also so much more than just a cookbook. Lily writes about life, love, hurt, and heartbreak in such a painfully honest and vulnerable way it is a truly unique release in this busy Spring season.

Sparkling Cucumber Basil Lemonade

Recipe courtesy of the Kale & Caramel Cookbook

I subbed in limes for lemons because I was out of the yellow guys and I highly recommend it if you find yourself lemonless like me.

3-inch length of cucumber, chilled and coarsely chopped (about 1/2 cup), plus some extra slices for garnish

2 to 3 fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, plus lemon slices for garnish (or lime!)

1/4 cup still water 

1 tablespoon honey or agave nectar 

3/4 cup sparking water, or more to taste

Add the chopped cucumber to a blender or food processor with the basil, lemon juice, still water, and honey. Blend until smooth, then distribute evenly between two glasses. 

Add the sparkling water, agin splitting evenly between the glasses. Drop in a few ice cubes, and garnish with cucumber slices, lemon slices, and basil as desired. 

sparkling cucumber and basil lemonade | apt 2b baking co

Easy Coconut Macaroons

easy coconut macaroons-3952.jpg
coconut macaroons | apt 2b baking co

Guys, it's Friday and pouring down rain and I can't think of a better excuse to make/eat cookies so here is a real easy recipe for you. These macaroons come by way of cookie-god Alice Medrich and are easy peasy to put together. You might even have all of the ingredients on hand.

They are crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside and just sweet enough for an afternoon treat. Bake them as they are or add some flavorings, I am partial to a bit of lime zest and rum. You could also throw in some chopped dehydrated fruit for color and flavor. Raspberries are especially nice.

Have a great weekend! 

Easy Coconut Macaroons

barely adapted from Alice Medrich, cookie god

Makes about 22 cookies

4 large egg whites

3 1/2 cups (270g) unsweetened dried flaked coconut 

3/4 cup (150g) sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract 

heaping 1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon lime zest (optional)

1 tablespoon rum (optional)

Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper.

Combine all of the ingredients in a large heatproof mixing bowl. Set the bowl in a wide skillet of barely simmering water. Stir the mixture constantly until it is very hot to the touch and the egg whites have thickened slightly and turned from translucent to opaque, 5 to 7 minutes. Set the batter aside for 30 minutes to let the coconut absorb more of the goop.

Preheat the oven to 350ΒΊF and position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven.

Spoon the batter into 2 tablespoon sized mounds, they won't spread much. Bake for about 5 minutes, just until the coconut tips begin to color, rotating the pans from top to bottom and from front to back halfway through the baking time to ensure even baking.

Lower the temperature to 325ΒΊF and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cookies golden with deep brown edges. If the coconut tips are browning too fast, lower the heat slightly. Set the pans or just the liners on racks to cool. Let cool completely before gently peeling the parchment away from each cookie.

The cookies are best on the day they are baked, they will soften slightly over time.

coconut macaroons | apt 2b baking co