Fruit and friends

In many areas, summer ended today. In South Florida, the heat and humidity are still sky-high. My friend Amy was visiting this week from already cooling Minneapolis (that’s in MinneSNOWta, for the uninitiated) and after a long day at the beach, we wanted something light and refreshing. Enter sangria and fruit salsa!

She was my travel companion when I first had sangria in Barcelona. On a particularly hot afternoon next to the beach on the Mediterranean, we sipped sangria and ate tapas. I knew it would be the perfect afternoon drink while catching up on gossip and life.

I went with Sublime Sangria, from The Sublime Restaurant Cookbook. I hadn’t had the sangria at Sublime, a popular vegan restaurant in Ft. Lauderdale, but everything I’ve had is great, so I knew if this made it to the cookbook, the drink wouldn’t disappoint. It uses a red Zin and tons of fruits. It was like a fruit salad with some wine. I used lemon and lime soda instead of ginger ale, since that is my preference.

Sangria to drink and salsa to eat!

We needed something light to snack on before dinner while drinking and talking, so I made a peach salsa, full of contrasting flavors that tasted different with every bite. On salty chips it was the perfect balance to our drink.

It was a great light snack and drink, we could pretend it was healthy(ish) and I shared it with a great person I’ve been friends with since seventh grade that I hadn’t seen in years.

Sublime Sangria

Makes four glasses

Ingredients

  • 750 milliliters red Zinfandel
  • 1 orange, sliced into wedges and seeded
  • 1 lemon, sliced into wedges and seeded
  • 1 lime, sliced into wedges and seeded
  • 6 large strawberries, sliced
  • 1 cup blueberries, halved
  • 1 medium red apple, cored and slices into wedges
  • 1 kiwi, peeled and sliced into wedges
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons brandy (optional, I used triple sec)
  • Ginger ale (I used lemon-lime pop)

Directions

  1. Pour the wine into a 2-quart pitcher.
  2. Squeeze the juice from the orange, lemon and lime wedges into the wine. Add all ingredients but ginger ale.
  3. Stir and refrigerate for 8-12 hours.
  4. To serve, pour the mixture over ice and splash with the ginger ale.

Peach salsa

About 4 servings

Ingredients

  •  1 ripe, juicy nectarine (I used peaches)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons diced red onion
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced jalapeno (seeds and ribs removed)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional, I didn’t use it and the honey made it sweet enough)
  • 4 fresh basil leaves

Directions

Dice the nectarine. Add sugar if the nectarine isn’t very juicy and let sit for a few minutes. Add red onion and minced jalapeno. Stir in honey and lime juice. Add a sprinkle of salt or sugar (or both) depending on how you want it to be flavored. Just before serving, cut basil into ribbons and sprinkle over the top.

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