Moroccan Mint Lemonade

As the temperature sky-rockets in Brisbane, most of us are searching far and wide for a way to cool off… pools, air-conditioned movie theatres, you name it!

The heat makes me think of my last trip overseas, and to the tried and true tactics they use to cool off in Morocco. The mint tea is one of the highlights of any voyage to this beautiful country, and peppermint is an amazing cooling herb. It’s great for the digestion, and may reduce headaches (especially hot, throbbing ones).

With that in mind I came up with a cooler, healthier version of everyones favourite summer drink – a sugar-free lemonade, enhanced with the cooling herbal properties of mint.

Xylitol is used as a healthy replacement for sugar in this recipe. A natural very large sugar (meaning it is poorly absorbed which is a good thing in this case) derived from birch trees, or corn cobs (but also found in strawberries), xylitol has 40% less calories than sugar, and is metabolised slowly by the body, thus avoiding a blood sugar ‘spike’. It has also been shown to inhibit the growth of bacteria, especially in the mouth, meaning that it is useful for controlling and preventing cavities and gingivitis.

So here is another way to cool down in the summer sun, totally guilt-free…

Sugar-free Moroccan Lemonade

1 cup lemon juice

1 cup xylitol

1 tsp orange blossom water

10 cups chilled water

4 mint stalks

1 lemon, thinly sliced

Mix lemon juice and xylitol in a large jug. Stand for 30 minutes or until xylitol has dissolved. Add orange blossom water, chilled water, mint and slices of lemon.

Stir until well combined and serve.

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