Homemade Southern Lemonade
If you've ever wondered how to make your own lemonade, we have the perfect recipe, and next to southern sweet tea, a cool glass of lemonade is one of the most refreshing ways to cool off during the South's hot and humid summer months. Plus, just like sweet tea, the best lemonade is made using hot water.
You make lemonade with water, sugar, and freshly squeezed (be sure to use fresh lemons!) lemon juice. But don’t just put all of those ingredients in a pitcher and stir them up as sugar doesn't dissolve easily in cold water - no matter how hard you stir you will still be left with a layer of sugar at the bottom. So make a simple syrup by combining equal parts sugar and very hot water and stir until the mixture is clear, then let it cool.
If you want an extra hit of lemon, add a pinch of fresh lemon zest to the syrup. You can also add a few sprigs of fresh herbs to the warm syrup if you have them in your garden (rosemary, basil, or mint all work well) and let it infuse until the mixture cools. Remove the herbs before using the syrup. Or, if you fancy making pink lemonade just stir in ¼ cup of pureed fresh or frozen strawberries for each 1 cup of simple syrup.
Once the homemade simple syrup has cooled, just combine it with your preferred ratio of cold water and fresh lemon juice. Some people love super-sweet lemonade, while others prefer it on the sharper side. To see how you like it, add the water gradually so you don't overdo it but the flavour needs to be concentrated so that when you pour the lemonade over ice, it won't become diluted and watery.
Grab a book (we’ve got some great Mississippi book recommendations), sit in the sunshine and enjoy!
Or if you fancy turning it into a cocktail, why not try a Spiked Arnold Palmer. A refreshing alcoholic beverage with a blend of iced tea and lemonade.