Easy Peazy, Lemon Squeezy >> Fizzy Basil Lemonade

I don't know about where you live, but it's been cold, rainy, and windy the last few days. What happened to spring?! Well, we're faking the funk over here, because today I made a batch of fresh lemonade.
I've never actually made fresh squeezed lemonade before. However, last weekend I was supposed to bring lemons for a cocktail I was collaborating on with a friend, and I totally left them sitting on the counter at home. Luckily I was able to run to the nearby store, but what to do with the bag of lemons sitting on my kitchen counter? I think we all know what to do when life hands us lemons, amirite?
So a-squeezing I went. When we lived in Berkeley, there was a cafe in our neighborhood that made the most wonderful basil ginger lemonade. I thought I'd try and recreate it, except in my mind all I remembered was the basil part. Next time I'll get some ginger up in here, too. Anyway, this version was most excellent as is. To make 6 twelve ounce servings (72oz total), you'll need:

3/4 c. lemon juice
1 1/4 c. basil simple syrup (directions below)
~1.5 liters (56 oz) sparkling water
basil for garnish (optional)
ice cubes

To make the simple syrup, bring 3/4 c. water + 3/4 c. sugar just to a boil, and take off of heat. Roughly chop 1/2 - 3/4 c. basil leaves, and add to sugar water. Using a spoon, muddle the basil leaves a bit to release some of the oils and flavor. Let cool. After this, you can choose whether or not to leave the basil pieces in; strain the syrup if you'd like them out.

When you're ready to serve, pour all of the ingredients into a pitcher over ice. Garnish with a lemon slice, or more basil if you'd like. This would also be fantastic with a bit of vodka thrown in, if you're feelin' sassy. ;)
There you have it! California dreamin, on such a winter's day I tell ya.

Let me know if you try your hand at this!

shanti >> sondra

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  1. Sil Anderson4/13/13, 4:22 PM

    Sweet! I love lemonade and I definitely will be trying this out this summer. Thanks!

  2. abhaya_sondra4/13/13, 5:54 PM

    oh, good! hopefully you have a hot, sunshiney day soon. :)

  3. abhaya_sondra4/13/13, 5:55 PM

    I hope you like it!

  4. Mmmmm, that looks super yummy! I love fruit+herb drinks, especially fizzy ones. Perfect for spring....whenever it decides to show up!

  5. This sounds wonderful! I can't wait to start making fancy lemonades! The season is upon us, and I always try out a few new recipes every year.