In a small, Northern Vermont Kitchen, we sate our appetites with homemade meals and a love of local ingredients.

Blueberry Switchel

I feel like I have a “drink opening problem.” Scratch that. I know I have a problem opening containers. I’ve been guzzling iced tea during this hot spell, and my favorite type of iced tea has a weird clear plastic ring that you should be able to pull straight down to remove the ring.  And I can’t get it open all the way, so I end up with damp hair on the back of my neck and a plastic ring tickling my chin.

The second type that I like won’t let me open the seemingly easy-to-open cap – and I end up wearing iced tea – even though the bottle isn’t open.

For some reason Jedd doesn’t have those problems, so he’s my official “drink opener.” Which of course means I’m up the proverbial creek when he’s not here.

So, once again wearing some iced tea – but unable to actually drink any iced tea – I realized I needed a new hot-weather beverage. And that made me think to the past.

During haying season in Vermont (and I’m sure other places as well) farm wives would bring a combination of ginger water out to the men and kids working the fields. The ginger would let them drink the cold water without upsetting their stomachs. With hot weather on my mind, and a thin layer of sweat on my brow I decided to make myself this treat.

Bonus: I had some blueberries that were desperate to be used.

So, I’m drinking this cool glass of deliciousness while my iced tea no longer taunts me from the fridge.

Victory at last.

Blueberry Switchel

Yield: 1

Ingredients:

¼ cup fresh blueberries

¼ cup cold water

2 teaspoons maple syrup

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoons grated ginger

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

Chilled seltzer, tonic, or flat water

Ice

Instructions:

In a small mini-food processor or blender, combine the blueberries and water. Process until smooth. Strain seeds through a small strainer.

Pour blueberry mixture into a glass with syrup, vinegar, ginger, and salt. Top with seltzer and add ice.

Serve immediately.

(Photos by Launie Kettler)

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