Fruited lemonade

Every now and then, I get a hankering to do something frivolous and “non-essential”* in the kitchen. Sometimes that means a dessert for no reason (mmm, peach and blueberry cobbler), sometimes it means eyeing a recipe for something delicious sounding like curried ketchup, and sometimes it means spending an hour making lemonade from scratch. It’s not necessarily cost-effective, but it is dang delicious. The oppressive heat in Columbus had me thinking that some fresh-squeezed lemonade was going to be worth my time. Lovely recipes popping up on various food blogs had me daydreaming about relaxing outside with a sweating glass of ice-cold lemonade and a book.

When I saw this recipe for Fruit and Herb Lemonade on Love and Olive Oil, a lightbulb went off. We had some blackberries, and we have an out-of-control patch of mint. All I needed to make it happen was a bag of lemons and some patience. It’s a very easy recipe to follow, though I won’t lie, I always forget how little I like straining puree through a sieve until I am up in it. (I have made gazpacho exactly one time, and that is mostly the reason why. Though I do love me a cold soup.) I didn’t allow time for the simple syrup to chill in the fridge, since the lemonade wasn’t for immediate consumption, just combined the ingredients as they were ready. I also added all of the syrup that recipe makes and it was the right amount of sweetness for me, but just barely. It took a sip or two to get used to the mint/blackberry combo, but now I’m pretty into it. We always have mint, and we often have berries of some kind, so as soon as I forget about the annoyance of forcing puree through the sieve, I’d be into making this again.

(I’d like to note that while food blogs have GORGEOUS photography, I was far too impatient to wait for the sun to come back out on the day I shot this, plus I was in a hurry to get back inside and finish sweeping and mopping our gross kitchen floor, so imagine this picture is prettier than it is. I did take the time to pluck a little sprig of mint, which I promptly tossed before slamming the lemonade, heh.)

Next I want to try Joy the Baker’s Lavender Lemonade. Ever since my bestie and I traveled into NYC to go to Moby’s tea shop in the village (the Teany website appears to be down right now, but you can still see the Google Plus page if you’re interested), and I sampled the lavender lemonade, I’ve been obsessed with the flavor combo. We have some dried lavender from the Mexican grocery store in our neighborhood. Another bag of lemons and I should be in business!

*Note: “non-essential” never applies to cookies. Even if they are cookies for no particular reason, cookies are an essential part of life. Never forget this.

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7 comments on “Fruited lemonade

  1. Amber says:

    I made the blueberry version of this lemonade tonight. It was amazing! Thanks for inspiring me!

    • Kate says:

      I’m so glad that you liked it! Did you end up straining the lemon juice as well? The first time I made lemonade, I didn’t strain out the little bits of pulp that ended up in the juice and it was a bit…rustic for my taste. This time I did, because I was straining the fruit anyway, and I liked it a lot more!

      • Amber says:

        I did strain the lemons, but I have a serious aversion to pulp in juices. I was not totally successful in getting the puree completely pulp free for this, so I’ll have to work on that for next time.

        • Kate says:

          I also got little bits of fruit matter that came through my mesh strainer, but not enough to bother me. Maybe you should try lining your strainer with a few layers of cheesecloth. I bet that’d really tighten up the straining process, but it’ll probably take ages to work the fruit through. If you’re commited to a totally smooth drink, though, that might be the next thing to try!

  2. Heather says:

    Kate, my dear, you need to try Joy’s Lavender Lemon Bars (http://tastytrix.blogspot.com/2012/02/lavender-lemon-bars-for-joy-baker.html). They are from her cookbook and not on her website. I whipped up a batch for people at work and they were gobbled up by all, even though some were hesitant to eat lavender.

    • Kate says:

      I made those for Easter! I liked them a lot, though I wasn’t sure about the proportion of crust to filling. Tim liked how thick the crust was, though, so I probably won’t tinker with the amounts. The lavender is delightfully subtle in those bars, I’d totally make them again!

  3. [...] I cannot buy anything new.* Over the summer a friend of mine posted these recipes for lemonade.  In the dog days of summer, they really appealed to me, and I decided I simply had [...]

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