We believe in celebrating.
This celebratory lemonade was inspired by a stroll through the farmers market with Tea. After a long talk over paper plates piled high with groundnut stew and braised collard greens, we sauntered through the stalls, admiring the produce. She said, "Where is everyone getting the lemonade?" We saw little glass bottles with milky yellow liquid in every kid's hands. The stand for Woodring Farms had a blue cooler filled with ice and little bottles. We had to buy one.
I've just started experimenting with agave nectar. It's mild and syrupy, mellower than sugar, and with more layers. In this lemonade, it creates a marvelous taste. Sometimes, lemonade feels a little grating on my tongue, the tartness of the lemons clashing with the cloying grains of bleached white sugar. Agave seems to blend more smoothly, something frothy and unexpected.
A small warning: this recipe makes tart lemonade. We like it that way. The little ones politely demurred after one sip, however. You might want to experiment with more agave, if tart lemonade sounds a little glaring to you.
Shauna James Ahern
Celebrations deserves something unexpected, like this lemonade.
¼ cup agave nectar syrup
1 cup water
10 leaves lemon verbena, slightly crushed in a mortar and pestle
8 large lemons
enough water to make this taste like lemonade for you
1. Create the simple syrup: combine the agave and water to boil in a small saucepan. When the mixture has come to a boil, add the lemon verbena leaves. Turn off the heat and let the syrup sit on the stovetop for half an hour. Refrigerate until cool.
2. Make the lemonade: Juice the lemons as thoroughly as you can. Add the lemon verbena syrup to the lemon juice. Add water, in small batches, until the lemonade tastes the way you like to drink it.
3. Serve over ice and garnish with a leaf of lemon verbena. Youre going to want to make multiple batches of this.
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