Blackberry honeyed lemonade

Summer is here, which means afternoons in the pool, heat, and glorious sunshine. Is it any wonder we had a hankering for homemade lemonade?

No regular lemonade would do, though. We picked a pound of blackberries yesterday that was just begging to be made into something special. Something that was not jam. Blackberry-lemonade anybody?

It should be said that I have just decided to sloooowly reduce – and eventually maybe eliminate – my intake of refined sugar. (More on that in a later post perhaps, though I’m still mulling it over and wondering if early in my pregnancy is the best time to start making dietary changes.) Traditional lemonade is not the best place to start – so here I substituted honey. Raw honey is easily digested, a probiotic, and is sweeter than sugar so it requires that you use much less.

I warmed 1/3 cup honey with 3/4 cup water to make a simple syrup. Once that came to a simmer I removed it from the heat and added the zest of 5 lemons.

While the syrup was cooling I juiced the lemons straight into the blender:

And then added the room-temperature syrup and the blackberries. They got whizzed about until they were very smooth and put through a sieve. I got about 5 cups of syrup.

This stuff would taste just great over ice cream! Not my plan, though.

About 1/3 cup of syrup to 1/2 cup sparkling water, plus some ice cubes, and voila:

Soooo refreshing! And a stomach-soother, as well. Tart, fruity, just barely sweet… and a fabulous way to slip your kids some raw fruit!

I think the next glass deserves a sprig of mint and a few delicious moments in a poolside chair.

4 Responses to “Blackberry honeyed lemonade”

  1. Katie Says:

    Awesome post! I have been experimenting with honey/lemon juice for my lemonade with lemons from the farmers market, but it hasn’t gone much beyond there. John and I are definitely making an effort to reduce our refined sugar intake…I tend to modify most recipes to use honey, agave, or just much less than recommended. I gave it up altogether for 5+ weeks once (it was Lent) and felt great! Slept better and lost a few pounds. Once I really started inspecting ingredient lists on everything I bought, I was gobsmacked at what they’ll pump sugar into! Pasta sauce? They all have it! And I will never eat store-bought BBQ sauce again. Looking forward to reading more about your views/evolution of sugar elimination as this progresses.:smile:

  2. diana Says:

    Hi Katie, great to hear from you! I have such a sweet tooth I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to eliminate refined sugar from my diet, but I can try. I do know about pasta sauces because I put brown sugar in my own, along with balsamic – this year I’ll experiment with a bit of molasses instead. Or maybe a sundried tomato puree would provide the sugar kick I like in a tomato sauce? If that doesn’t work (and I haven’t found a neutral-tasting natural sugar sub by tomato season) I may supplement with raw cane sugar. Not healthful, but perhaps less unhealthy than refined white?

  3. heidi Says:

    Yum.I was out in the yard working hard when yesterday’s “Splendid Table” broadcast had on a guest bookwriter/chef who makes his own sodas.Sounded good and easy and up your alley.
    http://www.publicradio.org/columns/splendid-table/recipes/natural_cola.html

  4. debbie swickard Says:

    Instead of putting sugar in your pasta sauce, try carrots. It’s fabulous! Puree them to mush or grate them to very fine chunks. Either way, the taste is great and you get an extra serving of veggies!

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