Lemonade, all sorts

You know American capitalism is alive and well when July 4th comes around and you see kids selling lemonade on the street. My daughter Gillian did it, with her friend Dana to help her (and potentially earn half the profits). They used an upside down crate and made two simple signs. One said “Homemade Lemonade 15 cents.” The other said “Best Lemonade.” (It was.)

Unfortunately we lived down a glen where there was literally no traffic on our road. The only cars that came and went were our neighbors (3 of them) and only one neighbor could actually see into our driveway.

There were no profits. But there was a lot of fun and the enthusiasm factor was high.

They also had a good recipe. They didn’t open a can of frozen concentrate or mix some crystals and water. They made lemonade from —- lemons! And sugar. It was delish. Tangy but sweet.

What better drink to drink on July 4th weekend than some good old-fashioned American lemonade. The real thing, from scratch. Frozen and packaged lemonade can’t compare.

You can make lemonade concentrate and keep it for days and days in the fridge. And if you have the basic concentrate you can also make variations easily — like Spice Lemonade or even “adult” versions like Yellow Jacket Lemonade (with tequila or vodka).

Try some. Here are a couple of recipes.

Old Fashioned Lemonade

1-1/2 cups water

1-1/2 cups sugar

grated rind of one large lemon

1-1/2 cups fresh lemon juice

ice cubes

cold water or seltzer

Place the 1-1/2 cups water and the sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 3 minutes. Add the lemon rind and lemon juice and stir. Let cool, then place in the refrigerator and let cool completely. Strain the mixture. Keep refrigerated until ready to make individual glasses of lemonade. To make the lemonade, place some ice cubes in a glass, fill 1/3 of the way up with some of the cold lemon syrup. Add cold water or seltzer, stir and drink. Makes about 8 servings

(Alternatively, pour the cold syrup into a pitcher and fill with water or seltzer and some ice cubes.)

Spice Lemonade

4 cups water

3-inch piece cinnamon stick

6 whole cloves

6 allspice berries

1-1/2 cups lemonade syrup

Place the water, cinnamon stick, cloves and allspice berries in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Strain the liquid into a pitcher. Add the lemonade syrup. Stir to mix thoroughly. Chill in the refrigerator until cold. Pour into glasses half filled with ice. Makes about 8 servings

Yellow Jacket Lemonade

3 cups homemade lemonade

1 cup tequila or vodka

2 cups ice water, approximately

1 sliced lemon

Mix the lemonade and vodka or tequila and pour into a pitcher half filled with ice cubes. Mix in 2 cups water (taste and add more water as preferred). Add lemon slices. Makes about 8 servings

Ask Ronnie a question: http://ronniefein.com/ask

To comment: http://ronniefein.com/submit