Cucumbers

NYC weather this summer has been extremely capricious: there have been days when it feels like spring, and other days when it’s so hot and humid it’s difficult to breathe! I’m always looking for ways to keep cool, whether it’s wearing breezy outfits such as dresses or tank tops and shorts, or buying something to eat or drink that will keep me cool. I find that cucumbers are definitely one of my go-to foods when it’s the summertime because it is light in flavor and super refreshing and hydrating!

I remember when Bath and Body Works had their famous Cucumber Melon scent that was a huge hit for many shoppers, including myself. It smelled great and it wasn’t overpowering like other fragrances I’ve smelled. But this post isn’t about cucumber fragrances… it’s about FOOD ♥_♥.

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I took a picture of some of the unique flavors at Porque No. Unfortunately I discovered this shop halfway into my trip so I was only able to try a few flavors, but I’m telling you the next time I visit Merida, this will be one of my first stops of my trip!

I went on a volunteer abroad trip this past January to Mérida, Mexico with UBELONG and was conveniently living in a hostel a few blocks away from the best artisanal gelato shop I’ve ever encountered. This place was called Porque No, and it had unique flavors you can’t find in America. For example, there’s a local fruit called the mamey, which was a favorite of mine when I went; it was like a cross between a papaya and a canteloupe, rich and sweet in flavor! The star of the gelato flavors, though, was the piña y pepino flavor, or pineapple and cucumber combination.  In Mérida, it was easily 90 degrees or more and half the time I was there, I felt like I was on the verge of fainting because of the humidity and the heat and the elevated sea level to the sun. When I tasted this magical gelato combination, I was in love–it was like an antidote for the dreadful heat and it made the scorching weather more bearable. Ever since coming back, I’ve been constantly striving to replicate this flavor. I’ve attempted making a pineapple cucumber smoothie at home, but it was nothing close to the taste from that little shop 😦

Credit: http://www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/kitchendaily/926514/cucumber-dill-salad-434.jpg

I subscribed to Southern Living‘s email newsletters and have been reading up on some recipes for the summer, including an awesome article on cucumber recipes! I’ve already attempted my own homemade Asian picked cucumbers using soy sauce, a hint of sugar and salt, vinegar, diced garlic and some hot pepper flakes, and it came out delicious! It’s so simple to create and I didn’t even need to follow a recipe (sometimes I think I have an innate ability to cook :o). Check out Southern Living’s recipe suggestions using cucumbers for this summer! Some of my favorites were the granitas, crabcakes, and cucumber ginger limeade recipes, yum :3

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