From Scratch: Homeade Lemonade

From Scratch: A new series here on the blog! Ever since I got married and had my own kitchen to cook in, I've been interested in making things from scratch, that I would ordinarily buy. Don't get me wrong, I didn't grow up in an overly processed foods family, in fact, my Mom would refuse to buy certain things I begged for at the grocery store on Saturdays, saying oh I can make that for us. And she did! I've been trying to take that a step or two or three farther over the years and I now have an ever growing arsenal of my favorite recipes for things I would have normally bought before. So I'd like to share some of those here from time to time.

I love fruity drinks! Here is a classic! I got into juicing my own juice when we inherited the one pictured above! I tried my hand at orange and grapefruit juice and of course lemonade! They are so unbelievably fresh, it's worth the extra work to make them from scratch! Of course you can always stir a few extras in like berries, basil, mint or make an adult version. I've been wanting to try this Rosemary St. Germain one from Lesley!

What you need:
1 cup sugar
5 cups water, divided
6 to 8 lemons (about 1 cup of lemon juice)

How to do it:

  1. Make the simple syrup. 
    Combine the sugar and 1 cup of the water in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer over low heat to dissolve sugar.  Once the sugar is completely dissolved, remove from heat to cool.
  2. Squeeze the lemons.  Roll each lemon over your cutting board, pressing down as you do.  This will help them to release their juice.  Cut in half and squeeze.  Repeat until you have one cup.  You may not need all the lemons but try to save at least one half if you want to garnish your glasses.
  3. Combine.  Add the cooled syrup to your pitcher, followed by the lemon juice and the remaining 4 cups of water. Stir.  Taste and adjust: add a few tablespoons of sugar if it needs to be sweeter or the juice of 1/2 lemon if it needs more tartness.
  4. Add ice.  Add ice to pitcher if you think you will drink the whole pitcher right away.  Otherwise add ice to each glass.

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