I have a bit of an obsession with citrusades (you know, of the lemon and lime variety). It started in high school: I was curious about how hard it was to make from-scratch lemonade (not hard it turns out), and after my first batch I was hooked. So my family were good sports and taste-tested all kinds of citrusy concoctions for years, and since then it's just always been sort of a thing of mine. My specialty is a vanilla-honey limeade (1 cup lime juice, 2/3 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons honey, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, ~ 6 cups water), but this season is so rich with produce that I've been experimenting and branching out a little. I'll share a couple of recent successes, and some citrusade tips.
(Have you ever noticed the tiny beads of water that pop up on a cut cucumber? It's like its so full of moisture it just can't keep it inside. I think they're so pretty and gem-like).
First up: cucumber limeade. This was really good. 1 cup sugar, 1 cup lime juice, a bunch of cucumber slices and ~ 6 cups water. When you're making a citrusade without a simple syrup, it is easiest to dissolve the sugar in the acidic citrus juice before adding the water.
Let steep in the refrigerator for a couple of hours before enjoying.
Raspberry lemonade. We had wild raspberries growing in my backyard in high school so this one isn't really new. (These are not my raspberries, my mother bought this pint at the farmers' market. Our's are in the freezer for snacking.) A blender makes this one a total breeze and makes a nice frothy drink. 1 cup lemon juice, 1 cup sugar, 1 pint raspberries, ~ 6 cups water. Throw the sugar, berries, lemon juice and a cup of the water in the blender and blend, then add that and the rest of your water to a pitcher. Always start out lowballing the water and add more as needed. It is much easier to add more water than to juice more lemons.
Drink immediately and plentifully.
Indy likes anything her mama makes for her. Also, please notice that she's covered in dirt here.
Peach honey lemonade. This one was the happy result of way too much canning syrup being left over after I made those honey spiced peaches the other day. I didn't want to waste it, so I repurposed it into a lemonade (and a honey peach iced tea, and that was really good too!). I promise that even though you're probably not making spiced peaches you can still make this one (and if you are, use your leftover canning syrup!). 3/4 cup honey, 3 ripe peaches, 1/2 cup lemon juice, ~ 6 cups water. Peel and quarter the peaches and add to a pot with the honey and 3 cups of the water. (Do not skip peeling them or you will have fuzzy water! You can peel them with a knife, or blanch them in boiling water for 30 seconds and then plunge in an ice bath and the peels will slide right off.) Bring the mixture to a boil and then simmer for 20-30 minutes. Strain the peaches and eat them (or put on ice cream! yum!) and add to a jar along with the remaining water. You can always refrigerate your drinks and wait for them to cool down, or if you want them cold fast, leave out some of the water and add it in as ice instead, keeping in mind that ice is less dense than water (e.g. I usually add 5 cups of water and then 2 cups or so of ice). Then shake or stir vigorously to cool things down.
You better sip this one on a porch of some sort, or at least hang your head out the window.