Cucumber, lime, and mint agua fresca

ImageToday, my husband and I participated in the Tioga Pass Run, a road race that runs from Lee Vining up the Tioga Road to the eastern entrance of Yosemite National Park. I hiked the route, and he ran it. The race is 12.4 miles long and gains 3,200 feet in elevation. As this road is our link to family and friends in the Bay Area, we have driven it dozens of times, often impatiently as we try to outmaneuver the RV traffic and crowds of Yosemite tourists. It was nice to have a chance to be able to enjoy the scenery at a more leisurely pace.

After an enjoyable post-race lunch with friends and fellow racers, we stopped by one of the local hot springs and then headed home. Craving something cool and replenishing and quick to make, I remembered a cucumber agua fresca I had had recently at one of the local Mexican restaurants. Aguas frescas are refreshing drinks that combine fruit, water, sugar, lime, and herbs. There are infinite variations. Cucumber seemed a good post-race choice, due to its anti-inflammatory properties and high amount of vitamin C.

Cucumber, lime, and mint agua fresca

2 large cucumbers (about 1 pound, stems cut off but peel still on)

½ cup of lime juice (from 5-10 limes, depending on size)

1¼ cup of mint (I didn’t have that much but just used what we had)

¼ cup to ½ cup sugar (I used a mix of dates and agave)

1½ cups of water

In a blender, blend the cucumbers and ½ cup of the water. You will have a pulpy green liquid. Strain out the fiber by using a mesh strainer or – my personal choice – a paint strainer bag. Put the liquid back into the blender and add the rest of the ingredients. Adjust the flavors to taste, serve up, and enjoy.

 Quote of the Day

The world, we are told, was made especially for man – a presumption not supported by all the facts…Why should man value himself as more than a small part of the one great unit of creation?
—John Muir, naturalist and explorer (1838–1914)


Happy to be at the finish line in John Muir Country.