Welcome to summer! I absolutely love this time of year. Warm days, walks in the park, adventures around the city. And all the things that help us cool down, like my homemade peach tea, or strawberry mint lemonade. Oh yes, lemonade. That classic summertime favorite. That wonderful drink served in neighborhood stands for a quarter (or maybe a dollar these days). That beverage that was the impetus of many an entrepreneur dreaming of something bigger.
And this beverage leads me down a path to keep it interesting, which brings me to this wonderful creation. Lavender Lemonade. My mother-in-law planted several lavender plants shortly after moving to their new house north of Madison, Wisconsin. These plants have been providing a bounty that, I swear, would rival some lavender fields in France. Not really, but it’s producing a lot of fragrant buds. Lucky for me I get shipments of fresh lavender by the bag full!
Earlier this spring I started playing with the flavor combination of Lemon and Lavender. I’ve already decided that it will be the theme for an upcoming book that I can’t wait to share with you (more on that at a later date). If you follow my contributions you’ll remember a Lemon and Lavender Pavlova around Easter time. It was so amazing! The flavor combination is fresh, clean, and classic. So when I was gearing up to bottle up some lemonade for a few weeks of cooling off enjoyment I naturally reached for my stash of lavender buds and went to work.
The best part is that this recipe is about as easy as they come. I hope you enjoy and whip up lots of batches of this amazing cool down beverage, all summer long.
Peeled Zest and Juice of 6 lemons
6 cups of Water
1/4 cup Sugar*
2 tbsp Fresh Lavender Buds
Place 2 cups of water in a small saucepan and add in your lemon zest (peeled with a vegetable peel), sugar or desired sweetener, and lavender buds. Over low to medium heat gently stir until sugar is dissolved and then allow the mixture to steep for about 5 minutes. Don’t let the water come to a simmer or boil.
In a large bowl, add in lemon juice (strained) and the remaining 4 cups of water. Next using cheese cloth, strain the steeped lavender sweetened water (this will help remove the flour buds and lemon peel from your finished lemonade). Stir together and either pour into a pitcher or bottle up for easy grab and go convenience.
* can subtitle with Agave, Honey, or decrease amount of sugar to meet your sweetness preference