Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Easy On-Demand Lemonade

Here in NC summer is definitely here - we've been regularly getting temperatures in the high 80's to the low 90's.

And on a hot summer day, nothing is quite as refreshing as a nice, cold glass of lemonade!

The only problem is that making a pitcher of lemonade is kind of a pain.

Jack has a much higher capacity than I do for sweet beverages, so what usually happens is I'll make the pitcher of lemonade, drink 1 glass and then Jack drinks the rest of it within 24 hours.  Sad panda.  :-(

Also we like different levels of sweetness - he likes his sweeter than I like mine.  So either he feels it's too tart, I feel like it's too sweet, or if we attempt to compromise then we're both mildly unsatisfied.  I mean, it's still LEMONDADE so it's never that bad, but it always felt like there had to be a better way.


Lemonade on demand!

I was reading my most recent copy of Cook's Illustrated, and they included a blurb on how to make sugar syrup that wouldn't crystallize quickly for people who like to keep some on hand for summer drinks and cocktails.  BINGO!

So I made a pretty strong sugar syrup (1 1/2 cups of sugar to 1 cup of water) and let it simmer for 10 minutes.  The prolonged exposure to heat is what keeps the syrup from crystallizing in the refrigerator.  Then I put the syrup in a bottle, popped it in the fridge, and now whatever we want a glass of lemonade all we have to do is juice a lemon or two, pour in some syrup to taste, and add cold water.  BLAM - lemonade!

Easy On-Demand Lemonade
1 - 3 TBS sugar syrup
1 - 2 lemons, juiced
Cold water

Also the syrup can be used for a whole variety of things - sweetening iced coffee, mixing summer fruit cocktails, sweetening iced tea, drizzling over pound cake.... and more!

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