This heat wave has been brutal. In New York, you can’t escape the heat. It’s everywhere! On the train you take to work, in the bodega where you buy your gatorade, even the moment you step outside your apartment, you begin to melt. Summers like these require all sorts of rituals : three cold showers a day. Lots and lots of Mo-Town. Popsicles for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And at this rate, I’m pretty sure my hair is going to grow in the shape of a sloppy topknot. But there’s one thing missing from my New York summer: Sonic.
Sonic is a Southern summer staple. Maybe it’s one everywhere else but New York City. Unfortunately, the nearest Sonic is in New Jersey. Okay, so apparently not in Brooklyn. Anyways, I grew up drinking those syrupy, snowy slushes every summer. Watermelon, powerade, sour apple. The occasional cream slush. GAH! I get sad just thinking about the big empty hole in my summer life where Sonic used to be.
After wallowing, I realized I could probably recreate these drinks at home.
Not only could I recreate them, but I could make them all incredibly dork-friendly. I set out with a six-pound watermelon, a carton of coconut sorbet, and a refrigerator of other provisions, I set out to create my own twists on the slushes I grew up loving. They’re all simple to make, and perfect to enjoy anywhere–whether it’s your backyard in Santa Monica, your front porch in Savannah, or your fire escape right here in Brooklyn. Here are the steps to achieving iced nirvana with your very own blender.
THE GATORADE SLUSH
This is my personal post-long bike ride drink. It’s embarrassingly easy to make. And it’s refreshingly easy to drink. Sonic makes a similar drink with Powerade, but myself…I’m quite partial to the Floridian variety.
In a blender, combine:
- 2 cups gatorade of choice
- 2 cups ice.
BZZZZZ! Blend well. Sip slow, enjoy the electrolytes. I always drink this after a long bike ride or after a day of boogie boarding!
DAIRY-FREE ROOT BEER CREAM SLUSH
When I gave up the decision to give up dairy–I’m sorry, when dairy made the decision to give me up–I figured the sweets department wouldn’t be too hard. After all, coconuts are the new cows. At least in my refrigerator.
Imagine the sweet serendipity of purchasing both coconut sorbet, root beer and a new blender. And imagine, a bored Southern girl, lamenting in her apartment for a classic cream slush. DING!
Dork it up, add some ice, and we’ve got a dairy-free, allergy-friendly drink made for a sweet snack.
1 can (12 oz) of regular or diet root beer
1/2 cup plain coconut ice cream (or other dairy-free, vanilla ice cream)
1 1/2 cups ice
Blend well. Add straw. Bing! Perfect, I promise.
WATERMELON MINT SMOOTHIE
Here in New York, bubble tea cafes dot downtown Manhattan. With their crazy-sounding drinks, and of course, tapioca balls, their smoothie and tea menus are often overlooked. On a day with no tapioca balls at my favorite bubble tea spot, I was forced by fate to check out the other options. And so, I stumbled upon a watermelon smoothie. Literally just watermelon and ice. No dairy. Nothing. Ridiculous! Too easy. I put my parents onto the drink, as well as a handful of friends. Needless to say, the drink became quite popular.
One sleepless, hot night, I randomly threw in a handful of mint. After one gulp, it was set: watermelon mint smoothies are the official drink of Summer 2011.
To make this perfect drink, you will need:
1 1/2 cups watermelon
1 cup ice
1 tablespoon chopped mint
You know the drill: blend, blend away. Then sip, sip away…
I’m not going to lie: the idea of a full-on milkshake kind of makes me nauseous. I can’t even stomach the idea of the pain that might follow after consuming one, oh lord! Ow. I’m doubling over just thinking about it.
One day, I was thinking about it, as I stared into a bodega cooler full of strawberry and chocolate milk. And then, like a shining beacon, was Zico’s Chocolate Coconut Water. I was all like:
So basically, I bought two bottles. I barely remember what the first one tasted like, because after the first sip, I downed the entire bottle. Yeah, that good. The second one, however, stayed in my fridge until the craving for chocolate and ice struck again. And, I took to the blender again.
1 bottle of Chocolate coconut water
1 cup of coconut or other non-dairy vanilla ice cream
1 1/2 cups ice.
You know, hit “pulse” and blend away, baby!
All of these recipes are totally dork-friendly, so easy to make, and sure to quench any Southern (or Yankee, or Midwestern, or West Coaster) sweet, freezy tooth. I promise that you’ll be making these dorky drinks for the rest of the summer. Really.
These recipes are:
- peanut and tree nut free. soy free, too!
- fish and shellfish free…obviously.
- no eggs! no dairy! yes people, these recipes are VEGAN!
- oh, and of course…no wheat. hello!