When life gives me lemons….. well I just want more lemons. The lovely lemon has gotten a bad rap over the years, from a unreliable car being a lemon to the old Harry Belafonte song (sing with me people) “Lemon tree very pretty, and the lemon flower is sweet, but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat….” _ Around my world the lemon trees are laden and like the August’s overwhelming bounty of zucchinis people are bringing bags of lemons to give away when ever they can. The truth is lemons are fantastically versatile fruit used in savory and sweet but really I don’t know many recipes that take more than one or two lemons and a mature lemon tree has hundreds. For me I love a twist of lemon in my evening Martini during lemon season, lemon poppy seed pound cake also a mad favorite, squeezed over kale or arugula – divine! I was at a meeting the other day for a preschool that I’m on the board of. We were discussing a simple fundraising booth for our local FFA fair. Someone suggested a lemonade stand, we all agreed that would be a great idea then one of the board member said she could get a giant barrel of powdered mix at Costco for next to nothing…. I audibly gasped. I said “there are lemon trees all over town I’m sure we can easily get enough free lemons for our lemonade stand”, she said “but won’t that be too much work – isn’t it hard to make” … again audible gasp so for any of you who have never made fresh lemonade or heaven forbid never ever sipped fresh lemonade here is just how simple it is.
- 1 cup sugar (can reduce to 3/4 cup)
- 1 cup water (for the simple syrup)
- 1 cup lemon juice
- 3 to 4 cups cold water (to dilute)
1 Make simple syrup by heating the sugar and water in a small saucepan until the sugar is dissolved completely.
2 While the sugar is dissolving, use a juicer to extract the juice from 4 to 6 lemons, enough for one cup of juice.
3 Add the juice and the sugar water to a pitcher. Add 3 to 4 cups of cold water, more or less to the desired strength. Refrigerate 30 to 40 minutes. If the lemonade is a little sweet for your taste, add a little more straight lemon juice to it.
Serve with ice, sliced lemons. Throw in some mint springs to make it even more fabulous and Viola that’s IT.
I know, I know some of you are still tight in the grip of winter and can not even imagine wanting a glass of lemonade OK then here is Hot Honey Lemonade about as soothing as it sounds, some people throw in a shot of rum at the end but I like mine without, just hot and sweet-tart!
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 1-2 Tablespoons honey
1. Put honey and lemon in mug pour hot water over, stir, sip adjust honey and lemon to taste!
SIMPLE! So when life gives you lemons people… don’t tell me you don’t know what to do!