Agua Fresca, which translates literally to “fresh water” in Spanish, is one of my family’s favorite drinks during the heat of summer. Sold by street vendors in Mexico and all over Latin America and are just the thing for Cinco de Mayo celebrations.
If you’re planning a Cinco de Mayo party you’ll also love these frugal and fabulous recipes:
Light and refreshing, this beverage is perfect for entertaining because it’s delicious, everyone likes it, it colorful and looks beautiful both in serving containers and in the glass.
It looks especially lovely in a Glass Sangria Set
While this is a perfect summertime, non-alcoholic refreshment, if you choose to mix this with your favorite adult beverage, no one would be mad at you.
Watermelon is the most cost effective fruit to use, especially to serve to a crowd. But instead of watermelon, you could use any fruit that is soft enough to puree. Suggestions for variations below.
Watermelon Agua Fresca
Yield: 8 (eight oz.) servings.
What You’ll Need:
- 4 Cups Watermelon, rind removed, seeded and diced
- 4 Cups Water
- 2 tablespoons Lime Juice
- 3 tablespoons Sugar – or to taste
- Put watermelon and water into your food processor or blender in small batches and puree until smooth.
- Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes or more to combine the flavors.
- Using a fine strainer, strain into a pitcher but push most of the pulp through with a spoon.
- Serve over ice.
To make variations of Agua Fresca:
- Substitute 4 cups of any of the following fruits:
- Strawberries, cantaloupes, papayas, pineapple or mango for the watermelon above.
- Or mix several fruits together to make your own custom blend.
- Most fruits blend well with fresh mint, or basil and you can add honey in place of the sugar.
- Any citrus can substitute for the lime.
To make this beverage more like a spritzer; add some club soda or lemon lime soda.
Puree 4 cups chopped peeled cucumbers, 2 tbsp. lime juice, 2 tablespoons sugar or honey, ½ cup mint and 2 cups water in a blender. Chill 30 minutes, then strain, pressing on the solids. Serve over ice garnished with cucumber and lime slices. This is absolutely divine mixed with a little gin.
Tequila Watermelon Agua Fresca
Here’s how to make a refreshing cocktail with Watermelon Agua Fresca. In a large pitcher, muddle together 2 Large Mint Sprigs (at least 12 leaves), 3 tbsp. sugar, a pinch salt, ¼ cup lime juice. Add 4 cups Watermelon Agua Fresca and 4 oz. tequila, stir to combine then add ice to fill the pitcher. Garnish with watermelon, mint or lime as desired.
Experiment with your own combinations of fruits and herbs and come up with your own signature blend to enjoy all summer and for many summers to come. Cheers!