mint

Cilantro-Watermelon Granita w/ Mint by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


i know this space is usually reserved for the more mundane conversations about food, life, weather, what's going on at the moment; but there's so much more of the heavier things that impact us all on a daily basis that i typically reserve for conversations with family or friends. maybe some of you are aware that before i started blogging i was a teacher here in nyc.  i came into contact with students from all walks of life - those more affluent, those of whom who weren't. the last position i occupied before i left was in a low-income neighborhood in upper manhattan where i was working with elementary-aged children with learning disabilities.  it was a program that was run both during the day and after school.  i got to see these children in the morning, in the afternoon during lunch, and after school when they were tired and depleted from a long day.  

as i was running my blog part-time on the weekends and connecting my personal relationship with food and its impact on my health and well-being, i couldn't help but do the same with the kids i was working with each day.  i remember coming home and telling frank that there was nothing to eat in the neighborhood for lunch, or to grab for a snack.  so each morning i would meticulously pack my meals with fresh fruit from my local farmers market, make big green salads, and have my tea or green juice concoctions in my travel mug.  my kids would come in with their snacks brought from home - cheese puffs, potato chips, cookies, etc.   when the students in our after school program showed up they too would come with various snacks they had bought or that was packed for them and seldom was there anything substantial like a fruit or some sort of vegetable.  i began connecting the dots.  i was bringing food everyday because there were little options for purchasing fresh produce and meals in this neighborhood and my students didn't have that option either.

there was no term for neighborhoods or even towns like this when i was teaching (or at least i wasn't aware of them then), but they're now identified as food deserts.  food deserts effect more than 30 million americans across the country; they're places that have little or no access to fresh, affordable vegetables and fruit. they can be in the middle of a busy city like nyc, or in the middle of the country where contact with main routes of travel often produce less traffic, and therefore less fresh fruit and veg.  i'm teaming up with naked juice and their #DrinkGoodDoGood initiative to fight food deserts.  for every fruit or veggie selfie taken with the hashtag: #DrinkGoodDoGood, naked juice will donate 10 pounds of produce to aid communities in need - how awesome is that!? and you can totally join in on the cause by posting a selfie on instagram or twitter using the #DrinkDoGood hashtag - simple as that!  

*this post was created in partnership with Naked Juice.  all thoughts and opinions are my own. thank you so much for supporting the sponsors that help keep dolly and oatmeal going!



cilantro-watermelon granita w/ mint 

this is a simple, hydrating and super refreshing snack or dessert for this last hurrah of summer before we go back to school and things get back to the hustle and bustle.  i used cilantro and mint to herb the granita up a little bit, and i love the flavor here! sweet, watermelon-y, a few hints of cilantro and mint, and a little tang from the lime juice.  it's my perfect summer cooler -especially at 37 weeks pregnant! :) 

| serves 4-6 |

  • 1 medium seedless watermelon, rinds removed and cut into chunks (roughly 4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup organic cane sugar
  • juice from 1 1/2 limes
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh mint
  • mint blossoms, for garnish (optional)


method

  1. place the chunked watermelon, sugar, lime juice, and salt into the container of a blender. blend on high for a minute or so, until watermelon is completely broken down and sugar is dissolved.  add the cilantro and mint and pulse until herbs are broken up.  pour mixture into a 9x13" rectangular pan and place in the freezer.
  2. freeze mixture until the edges begin to set, about 35-40 minutes.  use a fork to scrape and break up any frozen parts, then return to the freezer for another 35-40 minutes.  continue to scrape and freeze until all shavings are frozen and fluffy, about 3-4 hours.  (granita can be made a few days in advance and kept covered in the freezer.)
  3. scoop granita into cups or bowls and top with mint blossoms (optional).

enjoy!


similar recipes:


granola ice cream w/ blackberry chia sauce

granola ice cream w/ blackberry chia sauce

mellow melon salad

mellow melon salad

coconut blue-barb ice cream

coconut blue-barb ice cream

grapefruit + lime-grape cooler w/ crushed mint by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


labor day weekend is generally the summer cut-off, the weekend before school starts, and before summer fridays end.  but i think a lot of us forget that the late summer season is still hanging around for nearly the entirety of september, so i'm not hanging up on summer yet - no squash, or pumpkin, or spiced baked goods just yet for me.  i'm still savoring the mounds of green goods at the market, the vast array of ripe tomatoes, and the mighty harvest of peppers and potatoes.  but by far this time of year is my absolute favorite as far as late summer fruit. the lavendar-lilac tones of figs, grapes, and plums make my eyes sore in the best way. they can be almost too sweet sometimes, but when paired with something to balance it out, be it savory, or in this case some acidity, it all makes complete sense.

with help from the lovely folks at Sanpellegrino, i made you all a beverage for your picnic, get-together, or labpr day party needs.  Sanpellegrino Sparkling Fruit Beverages offers so many lovely citrus flavors, (my favorite growing up was their aranciata [orange] flavor) including the flavor i'm highlighting here: pompelmo, or grapefruit.  it has such a wonderful zippy flavor, a perfect thirst-quencher for a these hot, late summer days!  and with all this beautiful late summer bounty, i thought i would muddle some additional flavors in there for some fun!  this is a wonderful balance of sweet grapes to tart grapefruit, and then there's a good amount of crushed mint leaves to freshen it up and give the drinks a subtle herb-y note.  i love having a non-alcoholic recipe on hand especially on long weekends when friends or family come over, i never know who's got an allergy or who is expecting a little one - but if you're into an alcoholic version i've got you covered in the notes below ;) 

happy weekend, and happy late summer! <3

*this post is sponsored by Sanpellegrino Fruit Beverages. beverages and compensation provided by Sanpellegrino.  all opinions are my own.   



grapefruit + lime-grape cooler w/ crushed mint

this drink would be perfect with a splash of vodka, a good gin (preferably not a gin that screams christmas in your mouth), or perhaps a good dry white wine. i would add just a splash to the amounts indicated below, or to taste.

| makes 8-10 servings |

lime-grape concentrate

  • 8 ounces seedless grapes (roughly 1 1/2 cups)
  • juice from 1 lime

coolers

  • 1 cup seedless grapes
  • 1 bunch mint
  • ice cubes
  • 2 cans (each 11.15 oz) Sanpellegrino pompelmo beverage 
  • 1 cup grape + lime concentrate
  • mint flowers or mint leaves, for serving
  • frozen grapes, for serving


method

for the concentrate

  • in a blender, blend together the grapes and lime juice until completely broken down, about 30 seconds.  place a fine mesh sieve (or cheesecloth) over a clean bowl; pour the juice into the sieve and use the back of a spoon to press the juice through.  pour juice into a lidded jar and refrigerate until ready to use.  juice can be stored for up to 1 week in the refrigerator.

for the coolers

  • place a few grapes and 4-5 mint leaves in a small 8 ounce glass, use a muddler or the end of a wooden spoon to crush the grapes and bruise the mint.  fill the glass halfway with ice cubes and add 2.5 ounces of Sanpellegrino pompelmo beverage (roughly 5 tablespoons), and 1.5 ounces lime-grape concentrate (roughly 2 tablespoons), give a gentle stir and top with mint flowers and frozen grapes.
  • repeat process for additional drinks.

enjoy :)


similar recipes:


hazelnut layer cake w/ fig compote

hazelnut layer cake w/ fig compote

sauteed grapes, kale, and edamame salad

sauteed grapes, kale, and edamame salad

rejuvenating citrus juice

rejuvenating citrus juice

green mojitos by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


so i didn't have a backyard garden market this weekend (darn you torrential rain!), BUT i did make use of lots of the kale and mint we've grown back there to make some major green juices, and then there's that bulk-sized batch of kale-basil pesto i made that we're still eating our way through. we also managed to clean up more of the yard, mainly the part all the way in the back that was composed of dirt, bricks, more dirt, and a really overgrown but charming potting table. frank leveled out all of that dirt, covered it with mulch, and hung the outside lights that we've been itching to get up since we got here, making it all a bit more cozy :)  while frank was busy taking on the dirt, i planted a bed of meadow flowers and beach grass, with some herbs and lavender weaved throughout. right now it's looking a little stark, but hopefully after a few more rains and some hot summer sunshine it'll fill out and give off that easy breezy, wild flower vibe i'm going for :)  we've also got another patch of dirt right outside our door that we've attempted to grown grass on. after the grass grew in patchy with a ton of weeds, we realized we didn't want to buy a lawnmower for a 6x6' lot of grass. so we scrapped the whole idea and plated creeping thyme that we're hoping will grow and spread - fingers crossed! 

some of you may know the tess masters from her blog, The Blender Girl, her app, or her new cookbook! i was lucky to receive a copy of her latest book which has 100 smoothie recipes ranging from light, mild, exotic, and leaving you with some high vibe dessert smoothies (the peach crumble smoothie is totally on my summer to-do list!).  this green mojito (sans liquor - i know, i totally should have spiked it), is incredibly light, fruity, savory, and tangy all in the same sip. all of the ingredients are easily found in your pantry or at the market, and you don't need a super crazy high-speed blender, which i know is a plus for a lot of folks out there. the lime and mint really shine through in this drink, and truly makes it reminiscent of a traditional mojito - minus that buzz ;) ;)

happy july, everyone! xo



green mojitos (v + gf)

the recipe below states 2 cups of frozen pineapple, however since i'm not the biggest fan of pineapple, i substituted it with 1 cup of frozen mango, and 1 cup frozen peaches. i also didn't have liquid stevia, so i replaced that with 1 teaspoon maple grade B syrup.  as for tess's "optional boosters" i added about 1/2-inch worth of ginger, and 2 teaspoons coconut oil; i also reduced the amount of limes from 3 limes to 2. 

| serves 2 |

  • 1 cup coconut water (or water)
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
  • 3 limes, peeled and quartered
  • 1 cup curly kale leaves (1 or 2 leaves with stalk removed)
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed mint
  • 2 cups frozen pineapple
  • 5 drops alcohol-free liquid stevia, plus more to taste

optional boosters

  • 1 teaspoon wheatgrass
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil

method

  • throw all of the ingredients into your blender and blend in high for 30 to 60 seconds, until smooth and creamy. 

reprinted from The Blender Girl Smoothies copyright ยฉ 2014, 2015 by Tess Masters. photography copyright ยฉ 2014 by Erin Kinkel. published by ten speed press, an imprint of penguin house llc. 


more drinkable recipes 

rejuvenating citrus juice

rejuvenating citrus juice

coconut citrus sunshine smoothie

coconut citrus sunshine smoothie

microgreen, mint + mango juice

microgreen, mint + mango juice