Homemade Lemonade Concentrate

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Although summer is turning into fall, it’s still hot in most parts of the world, which means it’s still lemonade season. But really – kids love lemonade any time of the year, so if you’re looking for a great way to preserve fresh cherries (or strawberries, or blackberries, or raspberries), make large batches of syrup -measurements below are approximate, and easily multiplied- and to refrigerate or freeze to make homemade pink lemonade anytime the mood strikes.

With homemade lemonade concentrate you can make real lemonade the same way you’d use store-bought frozen concentrate. You don’t need berries at all – a simple lemon juice and sugar syrup will reconstitute into classic lemonade (add a sprig of mint or fresh basil if you like). but late summer is berry season – and all varieties are perfect for making lemonade. Simply simmer cherries, raspberries, blackberries or other berries with lemon juice, strain, add an equal amount of sugar and simmer to make a thin syrup that you can store in the fridge or freezer to make lemonade by the pitcher or by the glass.

Homemade Cherry Lemonade

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
  • 1-2 cups pitted cherries
  • 1/2 cup sugar

Directions:

In a medium saucepan, bring the lemon juice and cherries to a simmer; cook until the cherries are very soft, then strain through a sieve into another small saucepan. Add the sugar and bring to a simmer; cook for a minute or two, until you have a thin syrup. Cool completely and keep in the fridge.

To make lemonade by the glass, pour a couple tablespoons into a glass with ice, then add water (tap or sparkling) to taste. To make a pitcher, mix 1 part syrup to 5-6 parts water.

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