Cucumber Chilli Aqua Fresca

Olivia Homecook
by Olivia Homecook
2 Servings
20 min

Refreshing, spicy, and complex, this light and flavourful drink is perfect for summer nights. Agua fresca generally refers to water and sugar that has been infused with fruits, seeds, or grains as added flavouring. Here, we have flavour from fruits, vegetable, and spices!

This drink appeals to those who love the combination of sweet and sour paired with spiciness (which can of course be adjusted!). Also, while you can, try not to skip the spices! They are what makes the drink so fragrant.

Aqua fresca can be made two days ahead, cover and chill in the refrigerator and stir well before serving.

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Cucumber Chilli Aqua Fresca
Recipe details
  • 2  Servings
  • Prep time: 10 Minutes Cook time: 10 Minutes Total time: 20 min
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  • 1 pc (about 8 oz) cucumber
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 3" ginger, peeled and sliced
  • ½ serrano chili
  • 3 star anise pods
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 1 cup of water
  • 3 tsbp lemon juice
  • 2 cups ice
  • Extra cucumber ribbons for serving. Use a vegetable peeler or cheese slicer to create the ribbons shape.

Peel the cucumber and set aside the peels.
In a pan over medium heat, heat the sugar, ginger, serrano chili, star anise, cloves, cucumber peels, and water, stirring frequently until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat, cover and let it sit until it has cooled down.
Cut the cucumber flesh into 1" size and add to the blender.
Strain the syrup through a fine-mesh sieve (discard the solids) and add the syrup into the blender. Add lemon juice and two cups ice and blend until smooth. Strain the aqua fresca through a sieve into a medium jug, discard all the solids.
Pour the aqua fresca into an ice-filled glass and add the cucumber ribbons inside.