Lemonade: Thirst Quenching Goodness

Gosh I love lemonade on a hot day.  Lots of ice.  Tangy, and not too sweet.  Cold and refreshing.  Just in time for a cool down in the hot hot heat!

I have a fantastic recipe for homemade Lemonade that is a huge hit with the men in my life.  They’re a tough crowd to please, so it’s a done deal when I find a healthy recipe that they like!

This fresh Lemonade skips the sugar, but is super tasty and thirst quenching.  AND… as a bonus… it happens to be pink, too!  🙂

Here’s how it’s made…

Mix up 6 cups of water with the juice from 6 lemons (makes 1 and 1/2 cups of lemon juice).

This on its own makes a great lemon and water beverage.  Even this could have ice added to it and enjoyed as a hydrating drink.

If sweetness is preferred… read on…

Make a simple syrup using Hibiscus Tea leaves and honey or agave…

At a local health food store, I found loose Hibiscus Tea leaves, which I used for this recipe.  I’ve also seen Hibiscus Tea bags at the Bulk Barn.  Finally, I almost used Raspberry and Hibiscus Tea from Stash Tea, that would have been really nice, but for my first go, I wanted to keep the flavours simple.  The Raspberry-Lemon combo would work really well, too.

The purpose of the Hibiscus Tea is to make the Lemonade pink without using dyes. Hibiscus Tea contains many phytonutrients, which have been found to be very supportive of heart health.

Here’s how I made the simple syrup to sweeten the Lemonade…

I steeped 2 tbsp of loose Hibiscus Tea leaves in a tea leaf steeper (tea ball) in 1 cup of boiled water.  Then to the hot water I added 1/2 cup of honey.  I love the lemon and honey combo, but you could also use maple syrup or agave syrup if preferred.  I stirred the honey into the water until it was dissolved.  More syrup could be added to taste if needed.

Then I poured the simple syrup into a jug holding the lemon water… as I did this I inadvertently discovered that I could make a layered drink with these two mixtures as the simple syrup sank to the bottom and it’s colour stood out.  An idea for serving this up is to pour the lemon-water into a glass then top with the syrup and add lemon slices to the glass or other fruit, which would look really nice.

Ta-da… Mixed the two layers together and behold the healthy Lemonade hit!  This would have also been great with lemon wedges added to the glass between the ice, or with strawberry slices.

Or… if I had used the Raspberry Hibiscus Tea, then I would have layered fresh or frozen raspberries with the ice.  The Stash Tea people make it incredibly easy to get creative with this Lemonade recipe.  They have Bumbleberry, Strawberry, Ginger, and many more herbal tea flavours that would be great here.  I’m going to definitely try to do a herbal fruit tea infusion then layer some frozen fruit in next time.

Stay cool, my friends.

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