Friday, June 18, 2010

basil lemonade

the high today in chicago is 95 degrees and it just so happens that i bought a lemonade pitcher yesterday in champaign. can you believe the odds?

basil lemonade (adapted from a giada de laurentiis recipe):

2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice (i used 7 lemons, but they were all pretty juicy. 8-10 is probably a safe average bet)
basil simple syrup, cooled (recipe below)
3 cups of cold or sparkling water
lots of ice (i froze mine with basil leaves and lemon zest inside)
fresh basil leaves and lemon slices for garnish (optional)

mix lemon juice, simple syrup, and water in a pitcher and serve in glasses filled with ice.

basil simple syrup:

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup water
2 cups lightly packed basil
1 tablespoon lemon zest (optional)

combine the water, sugar, and basil in a small saucepan and heat at medium-high until the liquid is clear and sugar granules are no longer visible, about 7 minutes. if using lemon zest, add to the syrup once it's off the heat. allow to cool, then strain out the zest and basil leaves.

note: this is a tart lemonade, if you prefer a sweeter lemonade, i would increase the sugar in the simple syrup. the recipe also produces a strong lemonade, which is why it is served in glasses with lots of ice.

and i'll leave you with lemonade and a city scape, for those who  pine...


hungry librarian said...

this was so delicious! I used meyer lemons from the tree in my yard, and it gave it a little something extra.

ck said...

mmmm, sounds awesome! i'm hoping to make some lavender lemonade with lavender from my sister's garden soon, and maybe i'll give meyer lemons a try. thanks for reading : )

Lisa harrison said...

Ck, would you make the lavender lemonade the same way? How much lavender? Flowers or leaves or both?

Lisa, Birmingham, Alabama

ck said...

hey lisa, if you're using fresh lavender i would use sprigs that include the buds, but not necessarily the leaves (the part that looks like rosemary), if you're using dried culinary buds (which you can buy at places like whole foods) i would use a tsp or a tbsp and see how strong the floral flavor is. you could always add more or less lavender syrup to change the flavor of the lemonade as a whole. i'd say play around with it until it's at a sweetness and floralness you're happy with. have fun : )

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