Whether you want to admit it or not, depending on where you live in the U.S., the end of summer is nipping at your heels at least to a certain extent. For me living here in Connecticut, it’s actually a pretty extreme extent. Summer-like temperatures (70’s-low 80’s) usually continue through September…the nights are cool, sometimes chilly. October is golden with good stretches of warm sun. But it could get cold (into the 40’s). Just as fast as foliage is out, the leaves fall…and from November through March….forget about it!
So it was in this spirit, savoring what I know will be my last days of blessed humidity and non-shivering out-of-the-shower nakedness with the windows open, that I stopped by the local farmer’s market. My mission was simple…to pick up some fresh sun ripened strawberries. However, I harbored doubts because strawberry season is over here…but yet…alongside the raspberries, what did I see? Fresh strawberries that had glistening red skins, pungent aroma, anda sweet tingly tart taste. Imported perhaps but locally…not from California.
It was now time to celebrate…one of my last days of summer with the following recipe using Vanilla Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss that I received as a complimentary sample for review from Coffee-Mate. It’s made with only four simple ingredients: milk, cream, sugar and natural flavor…no artificial preservatives. Despite what would normally be a processed food, I was surprised at the clean flavor that perfectly balanced light sweetness and vanilla with the other ingredients in the recipe. And at 35 calories per tablespoon, indulgence is not something to stress over. One slight modification I made to this Strawberry Bliss Aguas Frescas recipe was substituting one of the cups of water with rum. Enjoy!
Strawberry Bliss Aguas Frescas
2 cups strawberries, stems removed, washed
10 mint leaves
3 cups cold purified water
1 cup Vanilla Flavor Nestle Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss All-Natural Coffee Creamer
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Puree strawberries and mint in food processor or blender; place sieve over bowl. Add pureed mixture and press to release juice. You should be left with about 1 cup puree. Discard solids left in sieve. Stir in water, Coffee-mate and lime juice. Chill until ready to serve. Serve over ice if desired.
photo courtesy of Nestle Coffee-Mate