Cucumbers and mint are in season now, and they're also two common items in home gardens, so if you've got prolific mint and cucumber plants, this is a good way to use them up.
The Cuke Time: 15 minutes, plus 30 minutes' chilling 6 limes, rinsed 1 cup packed mint leaves, no stems, plus 6 sprigs for garnish 3 unwaxed cucumbers ½ cup sugar 2 cups vodka or gin, preferably Hendrick's gin Sparkling water. 1. Thinly slice 3 limes and place in a pitcher. Juice the rest and add juice to pitcher. Add mint leaves. Slice 2 cucumbers and add, then add sugar. Muddle ingredients. Add vodka or gin. Place in refrigerator to steep 30 minutes or longer. 2. Peel remaining cucumber and cut lengthwise into 6 spears. 3. Fill 6 highball or other large glasses with ice. Strain mixture from pitcher into each. Top with a splash of sparkling water, garnish each glass with a sprig of mint and a cucumber spear, and serve. Yield: 6 servings.Related: Straight Up: Rhubarb is Springing Up in Warm-Weather Drinks Spiked Boba from The New York Times Straight Up: Pimm's Cup for the English Gardener (Images: Kathryn Hill and Hendrick's Gin Recipe: Adam Frank)