Fresh Raspberry Lavender Lemonade

Today, for Color Your Summer, I’m celebrating PURPLE and incorporating my favorite purple plant in my favorite summer drink.

Not to worry…it doesn’t taste like a spa treatment. ;)

It’s a refreshing raspberry lemonade with that extra special touch. Just a little something that adds an extra note of deliciousness.

Lavender being that special something of course, that complements the lemon and raspberry just right.

You don’t need much. Just a couple sprigs of fresh lavender to take your lemonade from back porch weeknight dinner to backyard garden party.

The ingredients are simple:

1 cup white sugar + more for taste
1 cup water + one quart (4 cups) of water
9-10 medium sized lemons
1 cup raspberries (1/2 cup for the lemonade and 1/2 cup for garnish)
2-3 sprigs of fresh culinary lavender
fresh mint and extra lavender sprigs to garnish (optional)

Recipe makes 5 1/2 cups or about 4 servings.

Note about lavender:
- Be sure to use a culinary lavender like Munstead. Other varieties may be for aroma therapy products and may be too strong, or they may be ornamental. Note: Most stores and garden nurseries carry only culinary lavender. It the most common kind.  The price of pre-picked lavender in the grocery store (assuming your store carries it) is almost the same as buying a lavender plant at a nursery. So, if you can, buy the plant and you can make batches of raspberry lavender lemonade all summer long. I also hear lavender is delicious in scones….lots of options.

- You can use dried lavender. It can be more potent, so scale back to about 1/2-1 teaspoons of dried lavender blossoms, depending on how fragrant they are. Ensure that they were dried and stored in a hygienic manner as well.

Alright. Let’s begin!

First, make a simple syrup…which is just sugar and water boiled until slightly thickened.

While your sugar and water are coming to a boil at medium high heat, make sure to stir it (preferably with a wooden spoon) and check on it regularly. You also want to prep your lavender. Cut the stems off and bruise the blossoms by smashing them with your knife or the palm of your hand.

Toss in a 1/2 cup of washed raspberries with the bruised lavender blooms.

Take your wooden spoon and mash up the fruit and blooms. Continue to the heat the syrup until it comes to a rolling boil. Reduce the heat to medium or medium/low. Keep it simmering for about 20 minutes until slightly thickened. Continue to stir occasionally.

Fun fact: Because raspberries naturally contain some pectin, the simple syrup will develop a jam like film on the sides of the pan.

Once it’s ready, pour it into a pyrex dish/measuring cup (that won’t shatter) and refrigerate it about one hour. Remove the lavender blooms if you desire. You can also strain out the seeds and pulp with a fine mesh strainer. I prefer not to.

While you wait, juice 8 of your 9-10 lemons. Set the best looking 1-2 aside for garnish.

Your 8 medium lemons should yield about 1 1/3-1 1/2 cups of lemon juice. Slice your garnish lemons up into sliced wedges.

Add 1 quart of cold water to the lemon juice.

Add your simple syrup and stir well. Taste the lemonade and supplement with more white sugar until you reach the sweetness you desire. I added 1/4 a cup of sugar to mine because I like it a little tart.

The tartness of lemons can vary from batch to batch, so this step of tasting and adjusting sweetness is important.

Add your sliced lemons and reserved raspberries. Add ice if you like.

Garnish, serve, and enjoy!

Here is the quick and easy version of the recipe:

Fresh Raspberry Lavender Lemonade

Makes 5 1/2 cups or 4 servings

Ingredients:
1 cup white sugar + more for taste
1 cup water + one quart (4 cups) of water
9-10 medium sized lemons
1 cup raspberries (1/2 cup for the lemonade and 1/2 cup for garnish), washed
2-3 sprigs of fresh lavender
fresh mint and extra lavender sprigs for garnish (optional)

Directions:
1. Combine 1 cup sugar with 1 cup water in a small sauce pan. Stir together with a wooden spoon.
2. Add 1/2 cup of raspberries and 2-3 small sprigs of bruised lavender that has had stems removed. Mash them up in the pan with the wooden spoon.
3. Heat on medium-high heat until it reaches a rolling boil. Reduce heat to med/ med-low and simmer for about 15-20 minutes until mixture is slightly thickened.
4. Pour into shatter proof glass measuring cup (pyrex) and refrigerate for about an hour, or until cooled.
5. Juice 8 lemons. You should yield about 1 1/3-1 1/2 cups of lemon juice. Slice remaining 1-2 lemons for garnish.
6. Add one quart of cold water. Add the cooled simple syrup mixture. Mix well.
7. Add more sugar to achieve desired sweetness. ( I added 1/4 cup.)
8. Add ice. Garnish with lemon, raspberry, mint and lavender springs (optional).

Serve and enjoy!

Then head on over to Kojodesigns for another lemonade inspired post from A Pretty Cool Life!

I’ll see you back tomorrow with my first guest. I’m so excited!!
Oh, and click HERE to read about all the great giveaways going on throughout this series!

Comments

  1. says

    Great recipe! A tip about your lemon squeezer, it works best when you put the cut side of your lemon half against the holes. It basically turns the lemon inside out and gets ALL the juice.

  2. says

    Another way to get more lavender flavor is to rub it into the sugar with your fingers prior to making the simple syrup. Leave it in the fridge a day or two to get the most flavor out! And I only learned how to use my lemon squeezer properly by watching Martha… I had done it the wrong way for a long time! :)

  3. says

    LizzieLulu – gotta love Martha! ;) And great idea. I love the idea of marinating in the sugar for a day first. I love my readers! :) Thank you!

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