Sunday, March 18, 2012

Basil Lemonade

With the summer-like weather this weekend, I thought it would be the perfect time to make my Basil Lemonade.  The inspiration of this drink came from the wonderful D'amico and Sons restaurant here in uptown.  A few summers ago, they featured this lovely drink and I instantly had to go home and create my own recipe.  After a few trials and many lemons later (I used to squeeze the lemons by hand and figured out buying the juice is much easier), I discovered the perfect drink that is fantastic for picnics, summer barbecue parties, or just during a hot day.  If you are entertaining, feel free to add some rum or vodka to the mix. Cheers!

Basil Lemonade
4 cups water
3 cups basil simple syrup (recipe follows)
2 cups pure lemon juice
1 lemon sliced into wheels
1 small bunch of basil leaves

In a large pitcher pour in the water, basil simple syrup, and lemon juice.  Stir to combine and then add the sliced lemon wheels.  Tear the basil leaves in half to release their flavor and add to the pitcher.  Stir all ingredients together and pour into a glass filled with ice.

Basil Simple Syrup
3 cups of water
3 cups of granulated sugar
3 bunches of basil (about 2.5 oz)

In a saucepan, combine the water, sugar, and basil.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and cool the syrup.  Once cooled, remove the basil leaves and discard.  Any extra cooled syrup can be saved in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

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