It’s the end of March, there’s an inch of snow outside, and it’s officially spring. While I realize those last two things don’t go together, I’m done complaining about the weather in Chicago (almost). Last week I had a nice escape and preview of warmer weather ahead at Chicago’s Flower & Garden Show.

As in the past, this year’s Show was held in Navy Pier and featured all things spring: flowers, fruits and vegetables, garden displays, kids’ entertainment and cooking demonstrations by local chefs, yours truly included. The Show was sponsored by Mariano’s and the theme was “Do Green. Do Good.”

With spring in mind and keeping with the theme, I created two recipes to share. The first is a gluten-free and vegetarian quinoa vegetable salad called “Go Green, Go Good Spring Salad”. You can find the recipe on our Gluten-Free Family Food blog, or stop into the Restaurant and order it as a special. Not to toot my own horn, but it’s pretty darn amazing! I highly suggest trying it soon.

The next recipe is a Berghoff and family favorite – Cucumber Lemonade. This refreshing and light lemonade is a fan favorite at catered events, and a request I get every spring/summer from my kids at home. The simplicity of the recipe is one of the best parts and the sole reason I don’t mind making it upon request.

This year we took it up a notch and added a little more green with one of our favorite liqueurs, Coconut Lime CelloVia. CelloVia is a delicious flavored liqueur that’s also locally made. Its low alcohol content and wonderful flavor make it a versatile addition to many of our cocktails in the Bar.

I will admit that I am not a huge fan of coconut and was a bit nervous of the addition to the Cucumber Lemonade. I was wrong! The subtle fruity addition is truly the perfect combination to this backyard favorite. Needless to say, this drink will be on our Summer Specials.

If you wish to keep the lemonade non-alcoholic, simply leave out the CelloVia. Or make two batches: one for the kids and an alcoholic version for the adults. Either way this refreshing party addition will be having you sipping right into spring. Cheers!

Cucumber Lemonade with Coconut Lime CelloVia

Yield: 1/2 Gallon or 1 Pitcher

Ingredients

  • 1 Large cucumber pureed (with 1/2 qt. water)
  • 1 qt. water
  • ½ qt. frozen lemonade
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ cups Coconut Lime CelloVia (12 ounces)

Instructions

In a food processor, puree cucumber, and strain the liquid into a large pitcher.

Add the water, lemonade, sugar, and CelloVia .

Stir well and serve over a full glass of ice, garnished with a cucumber or piece of mint.

http://www.theberghoff.com/2014/03/26/cucumber-lemonade/