Have you been to the farmers market lately? It’s a crazy spectacle of colour! All of my favourite fruit is finally showing up and they’re ripe and ready to be turned into something tasty and refreshing.
I’m sure you’ve seen “agua frescas” popping here and there on the internet; agua frescas are basically fruit-flavoured water, typical of warm areas like the southern states in the US, or even Mexico and the rest of Latin America. Agua frescas are usually made with super duper ripe fruit that’s about to go toast – this is the secret to a tasty agua fresca, as the fruit is really sweet and packed with flavour, which means you will have to add little sweetener if any at all. In some areas they even mix it with tea (e.g. peach agua fresca with tea and ice, hello!).
I thought of combining some of them with fizzy water (like an all-natural italian soda) and ice cream to turn them into floats, a.k.a. Summer in a glass! The best thing about these floats is that you can make them with any flavour combos you like; just grab whatever looks best at the market and make a batch!
Oh and since we want to save some time so we get more chill time at the pool, you can just buy the ice cream already made. I recommend not adding any extra sugar to your agua fresca as the ice cream will act as the sweetener. Keep in mind that fruit sorbets (especially citrus flavoured) have a higher content of sugar, so if you like your floats on the sweeter side go for some of those.
Lastly, play with your toppings and get creative! I used sprinkles and fruit to top mine, but you can add pretty much anything else you like (chilli powder? Yaas!).
The flavour combos I made were:
● Watermelon agua fresca with blackberry sorbet, topped with sprinkles
● Pineapple agua fresca with vanilla coconut ice cream, topped with toasted shredded coconut
● Cantaloupe orange agua fresca with lime sorbet, topped with fresh lime zest
Below is the basic recipe to make the agua fresca concentrate for any flavour and my tips to assemble.
Let’s make some!
Agua Fresca Ice Cream Floats
Makes 1L of agua fresca which yields about 4-6 floats depending on size of the glass
For the agua fresca:
– 3 cups chopped ripe fruit
– 2 tbsp agave syrup
– 1 tablespoon lemon juice (the acidity goes well with almost any fruit, so don’t skip it!)
– 2 cups of water
– 1L club soda or seltzer water
For the toppings:
– Ice cream of your choice (about 1 scoop per float)
– Fresh herbs (mint, basil, even thyme works!)
1. Place the fruit, syrup, lemon juice, and water in a blender and blend on high speed for a few minutes until smooth.
2. Pour the contents in a small pan and simmer for 5-7 minutes until liquid starts to reduce. Remove from heat and cool completely. Your agua fresca concentrate is ready!
3. To make the fizzy agua fresca place the concentrate in a jug, then slowly pour club soda or seltzer water, give it a very gently swirl to combine and that’s it. If you don’t want any pulp in your agua fresca, strain the concentrate before adding to the jug (press it with a spoon to extract all the flavour). NOTE: make the agua fresca just before serving so it’s super fizzy, if it sits outside for too long it’ll go flat.
To make the floats:
Grab a tall glass, fill ¾ with fizzy agua fresca, add a scoop of ice cream or sorbet, top with ingredients of your choice and start sippin’!
● Use super ripe fruit to have a flavourful agua fresca. You can also add a touch of natural juice if you want (e.g. cucumber juice and mint? yum!)
● When mixing the agua fresca with the concentrate, be gentle and swirl slowly, you don’t want to get rid of all the fizz.
● When you add sprinkles you’ll see tons of fizz happening, so it can be a cool party trick for kids!
Cheers to a colourful summer!