Cantaloupe-Ginger Spritzer

Fresh ginger root is a great way to add some punch to non-alcoholic beverages. Combine it with fresh cantaloupe juice for a refreshing drink.

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Non-Alcoholic Ginger and Cantaloupe Spritzer

Makes four drinks.

Tip: If you have a health food or smoothie shop nearby, purchase fresh cantaloupe juice to pull this drink together even quicker.

Ingredients:
1/2 cantaloupe, seeded, peeled and cut into large chunks
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
6-inch piece fresh ginger root, peeled and cut into thick coins
2 tbs. freshly squeezed lime juice
seltzer water or club soda, for mixing
thin cantaloupe wedges and candied ginger pieces, for garnish, optional

Directions:
Put the cantaloupe pieces in the bowl of a food processor and puree until very smooth, two to three minutes. Transfer to a fine mesh strainer set over a pitcher; let stand until liquid is drained and solids remain. Discard the solids and reserve the cantaloupe juice.

In a small saucepan, bring the sugar, water and sliced ginger to a boil; reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for five minutes. Remove from heat and let stand until completely cool. Remove the ginger pieces and discard.

Stir the cooled sugar syrup into the cantaloupe juice. Fill four 8-ounce rocks glasses with ice; fill each glass half full with the cantaloupe syrup and top off with seltzer. Stir each glass and garnish with cantaloupe slices and candied ginger, if desired.

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