Saturday is National Lemonade Day. It's a day we sit back, relax and cool off with a cold glass in honor of the classic drink.
However, just like any great recipe, there's more than one way to skin a lemon.
Lemonade can be found in a broad range of flavors: From regular to pink, strawberry or even watermelon lemonade. All of which can also be the basis for some sweet cocktails too.
U.S. lemonade is commonly available at fairs and festivals, often as a "lemon shakeup" with the shell of the squeezed lemon left in the cup. Lemonade was also the traditional mixer in a Tom Collins, but today it is commonly replaced by a bar mix. Lemonade is also an important ingredient in the Pimm's Cup cocktail, and a popular drink mixer.
Lemonade is a sweetened beverage made from lemons, sugar and water. It is popular in the United States during the spring and summer, when it is generally served chilled, with ice.
- 6 medium lemons, should yield 1 cup of juice
- 3 1/2 cups water
- 3/4 cup Sugar (can be adjusted by +/- 1/4 cup to taste)
Juice the lemons on a citrus reamer. Rolling the lemons on the counter with moderate pressure prior to juicing will result in more juice from each lemon. Try to keep out the seeds. If you prefer lemonade with no pulp, strain the juice to remove it. Dissolve the sugar in the water. Heat may be helpful if using a large amount of sugar. Combine the juice and sugar water in a pitcher. Stir well. Chill or serve over ice cubes.
Conventionally, pink lemonade is colored with grenadine. The Greeks were the first to have pink lemonade. They made this so that while the adults were having wine at celebrations, the children would also have a special treat. When the Greeks dyed the lemonade pink by adding wine, the common myth in the community was that this drink was made from pink lemons that grew in a forest that no man could enter and come out alive. They made the children believe that these magical pink lemons were brought back by a noble king.
- Hard lemonade adds an alcoholic spirit, such as tequila, gin or vodka, to the lemonade.
- Various fruits, such as strawberries and raspberries can be added for color and flavor. A small amount of beet juice results in pink lemonade with little change in flavor.
- Including the peels, bruised and sliced, gives more bite and a stronger aroma.
- Other citrus fruits can be used, including lime, orange, and grapefruit. Sugar and water content should be adjusted to taste.
The mild flavor of the watermelon blends nicely with the tart lemon juice.
- 6 cups watermelon
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
Remove as many seeds as you can from the watermelon flesh. Place watermelon and water in a blender and blend until smooth. Strain liquid into a pitcher, along with sugar and lemon juice. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate until chilled, then serve.
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