My favorite booth was one that is run by two women who not only grow vegetables, but also save heirloom tomato seeds. I bought several varieties of seeds from them which I will store for next year’s garden. SO EXCITED.
John and I were polarized by the boiled peanut booth (I was raised on boiled peanuts) and could hardly wait to get our hands on a cup of those heavenly creations, but in the meantime Tricia and Tim had moseyed next door to the next booth. As the sweat rolled down the back of my neck I looked up and saw Tricia sacheting back with what looked to be the most refreshing drink I had ever seen. I nearly dropped my cup of boiled peanuts in the franticness of demanding to know what she was drinking. “Limeade with mint”, she said. And then as she saw the calculating glint in my eyes, she protectively held the limeade closer to her, then quickly pointed and said, “Go get one right there.”
The booth was a flurry of activity with each of the six or seven workers busily carrying out their assigned contributions to the production of the limeade. I hurried over to the booth and only once I was there did I notice that there was a LINE…extending straight back to the boiled peanut booth from which I had just come. A variety of embarrassing, irritated, perturbed thoughts flashed through my mind, but I just put on my “Oh-I-was-just-checking-things-out-to-see-if-they-were-worth-further-attention” look and casually sauntered back to stand in line.
All that I can say is that the minted limeade was worth the wait. I watched as the smiling, confident young man behind the counter with long flowing hair shook each drink in a Mason jar, then adroitly filled the clear plastic cups. “I want to shake that jar and pour my own drink”, I thought to myself. “I want to do that right now and plop a straw in the jar and sit in the shade and stare at the sea of humanity which has turned out for the farmer’s market on a bright, sunny Saturday in July.” As I reached for my clear plastic cup I could see two spent lime halves, perfectly bruised mint leaves, hospital-style crushed ice (the best kind of crushed ice), and raw sugar which had settled on the bottom.
Even after the limeade was gone, the mint and lime halves gave a wonderful flavor to the water from the melting ice. It was a nice little bonus.
The recipe that I am using for this limeade is not particularly original, however the presentation makes it especially fun. There is something about drinking out of a Mason jar with a straw that makes me feel happy and care-free. Plus seeing the lime and the mint leaves hanging out with the crushed ice makes a great visual.
In the following recipe I departed from the use of the raw sugar in the bottom of the glass. Although I truly enjoyed the taste of the sugar, I did not like the feel of the granules in my mouth because I found them to have a ‘sandy’ feel. True, they were sweet and I could crunch them, which was not altogether unpleasant, but overall I did not like the feel and wished for a smooth drink. You may not feel the same way, so feel free to toss raw sugar granules in the bottom of your glass. If you choose to use the sugar granules, you may want to decrease the sugar in the simple syrup to avoid an overly sweet product.