Last Modified: Tuesday, July 31, 2012 6:53 PM
Hot days and warms nights may be a little uncomfortable but that is all the more reason to relish big glasses of ice-filled sweet beverages.
Drinking lemonade is a magnificent way to cool the palate, especially while sitting outside on a porch and watching the day pass away slowly.
In recent weeks I have enjoyed a few glasses of lemonade, but there was a problem I must admit.
None of the lemonade I had was freshly made. Most of it was bought and dispensed out of a fountain machine in a restaurant or convenience store. All of it lacked freshness.
Here is another bit of personal disclosure.
I have had no inclination of squeezing fresh-cut lemons and making a syrup in order to prepare a big container of lemonade. Lack of time and not enough patience are the reasons I present as alibis.
Food writer Fred Thompson notes that my reasons are relevant. In his book “Lemonade” he writes, “In the twenty-first century, lemonade has become the victim of our every-quickening pace.”
Such non-lemonade making behavior does not keep with my upbringing. My mom and grandmother made lemonade on a regular basis when I was growing up.
Fresh-squeezed lemon juice, water and sugar were the ingredients. Both women have a deft touch with sugar, insuring that the lemonade is perfectly sweetened.
My plan before the summer ends is to at least stop for an hour, and make homemade lemonade. Doing so will do my soul good. At least that is what Thompson thinks.
“Homemade lemonade is comfort food. Like mom’s meatloaf or mashed potatoes, the memories we associate with lemonade are special. Homemade lemonade is a treasure we need to pass on,” he writes.
No time is better than to take lemons and make lemonade. Enjoy.
Syrup: Grated zest of 2 lemons, 2 cups granulated sugar, 2 cups water.
Lemonade: 2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 12 lemons), 5 or 6 of the rinds reserved and roughly chopped, 3 cups water, Lemons slices for garnish (optional).
Directions: Make the sugar syrup by combining the zest, sugar and water in a medium-size saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat, cover and let steep for 15 minutes.
Make the lemonade by pouring the sugar syrup into a 2-quart container. Let cool, then add the lemon juice, chopped lemon rinds, and cold water. Stir well to combine. Chill until very cold.
Serve over ice, garnished with lemon slices if desired.
Note: The lemon zest-infused sugar syrup is an elegant way to sweeten and add lemon flavor to iced tea. Set out a small pitcher the next time you serve iced tea.
From “Lemonade” by Fred Thompson
Eric Cormier writes about food every Wednesday. Contact him at email@example.com or 494-4090.