This is the first savoury-based juice to appear on Juice Nation. It’s not the first one that we’ve tried in the juice lab, by any means. In an early juice experiment  we dropped an onion onto the blades of a centrifugal juicer, the result, one of the most intense liquids we’ve come across. We imagined several uses for pure raw onion juice, but have not tested any of them. It wouldn’t be surprising if it could be used as some kind of futuristic fuel. This recipe contains no onions but the base ingredients are more commonly used in salads than drinks.

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An apricot and a plum

August 20, 2012

The juicer had been primed for a savoury voyage (recipe to follow, soon). As we removed the bag of fruit and veg from the fridge and opened it to the warm morning, a taut-skinned nectarine rolled over to protect the plum, heavy with sugary ripeness. The pair suggested themselves as a sugary starter and contrast to the savoury, potentially disgusting, follow-up.

The fruit were quite big, together they were cut up into pieces. The plums were particularily delicious, aged purple grape skin covering soft, pond lichen green flesh.

150ml of juice was extracted from the fruits shown. The pulp mix that was pushed out of the nozzle of our juicer was so rich and tasty we stirred a bit into the juice for a ‘with bits’ effect, before running the rest through the grinder again. The mixed juice was ultrasweet, a silky sugar rush that kept the rich and distinct flavours of the fruit in their prime. This satisfying juice would work well diluted, particularly with sparkling water, to stretch out the refreshment.

While Juice Nation’s London Embassy is a perfect place to catch the summer rays of summer sun, this year, like many others, there has mainly been rain. Olympic London is an exhausted, overstretched, paranoid and angry sponge. A sponge filled to capacity with rain, sweat and grey, sludgy muck. We’ve all got a duty to try to squeeze something out of that sponge, even if it’s just the bits around us, so we don’t get too wet. Today, our method of doing this was to experiment with a juice compound we hadn’t tried before, Peach AND Apricot (PANDA). We got the raw ingredients from a local Turkish supermarket, just under £2 for 500g of Paraguyan flat peaches and 500g of Spanish apricots, both were graded class 2 quality and looked and tasted decent.

The flat peaches, a stunted, almost mushroom-like in appearance, variety we haven’t seen in the UK before, were at the earliest stage of ripeness. The standard apricots at their latest, so juicy the stones could be squeezed out by pinching the fruit with thumb and forefinger. The main sweetness in the juice came from the pulpy apricots with the peaches adding a sweet/savoury accent. Five flat peaches and nine apricots were juiced through the JN masticating juicer. The juice wasn’t filtered and the ripeness of the apricots gave a very pulpy juice, we got approx 400ml.

The first flavour that came to mind on tasting the fresh juice was carrot, perhaps the influence of the colour a deep, vibrant orange, but the juice had an earthy sweetness. There was also an echo of pineapple, a piña colada flashback. The peach flavour stood out well within the apricot sweetness and the combination is distinct. To further dabble with this batch, we diluted the 300ml juice with 250ml of water, this made the compound more drinkable, there was still a full flavour. The juice of half a lime put an accent on the sweetness, as well as heightening the distant neon of the half-forgotten cocktail bar. A dash of imported Jamaican over-proof rum created an interesting but far from perfect juice cocktail. The super-sweet, pungeunt spirit almost sat a bit awkwardly with the juice drink, getting on, but only just. After this test juice we plan to try the PANDA compound with both carrot and pineapple juice, as well as maybe some coconut milk and some rum.