Coffee heat rising

Beer Substitute!

Yeah, I know: “beer substitute” is a kind of oxymoron—brings to mind those watery “lite” brews and the horrid, pointless alcohol-free concoctions. Hear me out, though.

The other afternoon a great craving a cold, refreshing, and not sweet drink came over me. Normally I’d respond to that with a beer laid on ice for twenty or thirty minutes. But no. The new ur-Atkins diet prohibits booze of all kinds.

The fridge, however, happened to be harboring three of those long seedless cucumbers. {click!} Why not make a cucumber fresca?

Hey. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. 😉

So I peeled about half of a cuke, cut it up, tossed it in the blender. Added the juice of half a large Meyer lemon (because that’s what grows in the backyard) and a dash of cold water. Dosed it with a little salt and a generous sprinkle of fresh-ground pepper. Then puréed it into submission!

This created a nice, smooth purée. Poured about a half-glass of this over some ice, filled the glass to the top with more cold water, stirred gently, and garnished with a spring of mint.

AWESOME! This stuff is an admirable substitute for the beloved afternoon beer! But instead of loading in empty carbs and calories, it’s actually good for you. It would stand up to the rigors of a full-out Atkins regimen. It tastes wonderful, doesn’t leave you feeling bloated. Perfect for a hot day!

Cucumber beer