by Sheridan Lane, Director, Culinary Program and Operations, Lincoln Land Community College
With above average heat on all but two days in July, that is to say temperatures above 85 according to the Central Illinois National Weather Service, it is safe to say it has been hot. With fewer places to go and people to see this summer, we have been keeping our tribe cool by enjoying lots of family pool time.
Our family is so fortunate to have this special backyard oasis, and while it has undergone several renovations over the years, the pool on our farm has been cooling off summertime heat since it was first installed back in the late sixties. In 50-something years of its existence, it has served as host to countless get togethers, backyard cookouts, a few weddings and my personal favorite, lazy weekend afternoons of relaxation.
Given its age, the pool holds as many stories and shenanigans as gallons of water, and I was reminded again this weekend of just how lucky we are to be able to gather there. When I was a kid, our family of four spent most weekends listening to WNNS Light Rock 99, splashing or floating around in the pool and just enjoying quality time together.
Cool frozen treats are never far from pool time fun, and the recipe below definitely sticks out in my memory as a perineal favorite. The best part about it is that it can be made with or without the rum. I have taken the liberty to modify the recipe just a touch to make serving it a bit easier. Because this is a fairly large batch that can be kept in the freezer for as long as the summer heat lasts, I love to divide it into smaller amounts to make serving it a cinch!
Whatever summertime fun you call your oasis, from lake to river to the backyard sprinkler, take a moment to soak up those summertime moments, and check out this tasty treat. See the notes below for my tips and tricks.
Pina Colada Slush
My parents always froze the whole batch of this slush in an upcycled gallon Schwan’s Ice Cream Container and had a smaller container with the leftover. Then upon serving would use an ice cream scoop to scoop desired amount. I prefer to do the following:
750 ML Pina Colada Mixer
12 oz. frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
12 oz frozen limeade concentrate, thawed
46 oz pineapple juice
96 oz cream soda
24-32 oz silver rum (Bacardi) Adjust to taste.
10, quart sized Zip Lock freezer bags
Garnish with lemon lime soda or soda water and a lime wedge.
Do not use more rum or the mixture will not freeze. You can certainly omit the rum to make a non-alcoholic version, however the mixture will freeze much harder.
Directions: Combine all ingredients and pour 24 ounces in each of the heavy quart-sized freezer bags. Seal bag while allowing all air to escape the bag while closing. The last bag will only be half as full as the rest.
Lay a dish towel down on a cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Place four closed freezer bags lying flat onto the towel. Repeat layers with dish towels between each layer and then place the sheet flat in the freezer. Allow to freeze overnight or until hard.
When ready to serve, remove freezer bag from freezer, allow to thaw 1-2 minutes, agitate the mix to make a slush and divide between two glasses of your choice.
Top with 1-2 oz. lemon lime soda or soda water and garnish with a lime wedge.
If you are modifying this recipe to be non-alcoholic, consider using an ice cube tray to make them into frozen cubes and add them to a glass of lemon lime soda or soda water for an alcohol-free treat!