It’s summertime, and summertime equals lemonade. This lemonade is perfect alone, but also serves as a great mixer for an adult version of lemonade (add your favorite vodka). I make a batch of the syrup and reserve some of it to add to fizzy (sparkling) water or iced tea, or you can make two batches of lemonade with one batch of syrup. The basil flavor is subtle but distinct. Since it’s concert in the park season, I’m a lemonade kick -so look for more recipes to come.
- 4 Cups Basil (plus extra leaves for garnish)
- 2 Cups Sugar
- Zest of 3-4 Lemons*
- 1 1/4 Cups Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice (use more if desired)
*Use a vegetable peeler for large strips of zest. Reserve lemons for juice.
Add basil, lemon zest, sugar and 4 cups of water to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sugar is completely dissolved. Allow to cool for 1 hour. Transfer to a container and chill in refrigerator until completely cooled. Strain through a fine sieve and reserve syrup (makes about 4 cups basil lemon syrup).
Combine 2 cups of basil lemon syrup with 1 1/4 cups of freshly squeezed lemon juice, 2 cups of cold water, and 2 cups of ice. Taste, and add more water or lemon juice as desired. Garnish with fresh lemon slices and extra basil leaves.