There is a lot of talk on social media about LEMONADE these days... which has me thinking about my favorite summer beverage.... not Beyonce's record. Lemonade based drinks and cocktails are always part of summer fun so I'm sharing my secret that takes ordinary lemonade to another level. I use lemon simple syrup to sweeten it which is so much better than dumping in sugar and stirring until it dissolves. You can use lemon simple syrup in many different cocktails or to sweeten iced tea. During the summer, I keep some in the fridge- it will keep in a Mason jar for 2-3 weeks.
When I'm using lemons for cooking or baking, I always zest them first before juicing them. I put the zest in a quart sized Mason jar filled with granulated sugar. I add the zest to the sugar and shake it up- that way, when I want to make lemon simple syrup, I have the lemon sugar ready to go. It will keep in the Mason jar for 2-3 months but best if used within a few weeks.
LEMON SIMPLE SYRUP
Makes 1 cup
2 tablespoons lemon zest (about 4 lemons)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
Add the lemon zest to the sugar. Put water in a pan over high heat.. Add the lemon sugar. Stir. Bring to a boil and remove from heat immediately, stirring to make sure the sugar is completely dissolved. Allow to cool completely.
Strain into a glass container, like a Mason jar. Press the remaining zest with the back of a wooden spoon to remove all of the syrup from it before discarding it.
Use the lemon simple syrup for one of these LEMONADE RECIPES!