Yay! Strawberry season is here, and it is actually at it’s peak right now in Upstate New York. There really is nothing like fresh local strawberries, I try to take advantage of the fresh strawberries as many different ways as possible. This year some of our berry plants have been prolifically producing teeny tiny berries, they are not a good size for trying to preserve in any matter, and kind of a hassle to pick enough for a pie, but perfect for a batch of sparkling strawberry lemonade.
Sparkling strawberry lemonade mixes up pretty easily especially if you are using bottled lemon juice like ReaLemon 100% Lemon Juice , but if you are prone to migraines, or just want to avoid sulfites skip the bottled stuff and squeeze your own, it will take around 8 lemons to get 1 cup of juice.
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 cups cold sparkling water or club soda
- 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and halved
- In a medium saucepan, bring the water and sugar to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves. Add the lemon peel and lemon juice, stir, and remove from the heat. Let cool completely.
- In a blender, puree the pint of strawberries. Strain through a fine mesh strainer with the cooled lemon juice mixture into a pitcher.
- Stir well to combine and refrigerate until well chilled.
- When ready to serve, add the sparkling water and stir well. Pour over glasses filled with ice and serve, garnish with lemon slices and strawberries.
The kids loved this, surprisingly they preferred it mixed with ice water rather than club soda. I really enjoyed the sparkling version, but both were really good.
Recipe adapted from: FoodNetwork