Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Classic Lemonade

I don't know of any other drink as refreshing or tasty on a hot summer day than a big glass of frosty, cold lemonade.  Lemonade truly is the quintessential summer beverage, it's tangy and sour with just the perfect amount of sweetness.  Bright and cheery- it's sunshine in a glass.   I have been on a lemonade binge the last few weeks, ever since my mother-in-law shared this recipe with me.  I lost count of how many batches I've made, but it's somewhere around 20.  Of course, I am eight months pregnant, and I have been known to make and remake my favorite recipes over and over and over again but seriously, this lemonade is the best I have ever tasted.  As soon as I see that pitcher getting dangerously low, I have to start whipping up another batch.  The thought of being without a glass is just too much for me to bear.

I have to admit, when I first tried this at my mother-in-law's house, I was a bit skeptical.  She said it was the best lemonade she had ever tried and I wondered what was so special about this particular recipe.  I still don't know.  It only has three ingredients: lemons, sugar, and water.  The real beauty of it is that this recipe strikes the perfect balance between sour and sweet.  I have tried lots of lemonade recipes over the years, and this is by far the best.  The only change I made was adding some of the pulp to mine which gives it a little more lemony kick, which I enjoy.  This recipe takes less than ten minutes to make and will soon be your favorite summer drink.  Sure, popping open a can of frozen concentrate might save you five minutes, but will also fill you up with high fructose corn syrup.  Plus, there is nothing like fresh squeezed juice- it simply tastes better. 


1 c water
3/4 c granulated sugar
3/4 c fresh squeezed lemon juice (from approx. 6 lemons)
4 c cold water
lemon pulp

Place 1 c water and sugar into a small saucepan over medium heat.  Bring to a simmer and stir occasionally until sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes.  Set aside and let cool.

Juice lemons and strain to remove seeds and pulp.  At this point, I use a spoon to remove all the seeds and add remaining pulp to lemon juice.  Depending on the size and juiciness of your lemons, you may need more than six, but I find that is the average number it takes to yield 3/4 c.

Add lemon juice, pulp, simple syrup, and 4 c water to a large pitcher.  Stir well and chill thoroughly before enjoying.