Monday, July 7, 2014

The Best Blueberry Lemonade

It's July!  So what does that mean?  Well, a couple of things actually.  First, it's national blueberry month.  Woohoo!  Who doesn't love a handful of fresh, juicy and sweet blueberries?  Of course they deserve their own month!  Secondly, it's July which mean we are smack dab in the middle of summer and the heat from the hot summer sun.
How do you beat the heat?  I can't think of anything better than sipping on a big ol' glass of tart and sweet lemonade.  There's just something about a tall glass of it that is so refreshing.  Tucker loves lemonade, but if you asked him if plain lemonade could get any better he'd say yes.  How?  Well, while he loves the basic stuff he gets ecstatic about flavored lemonade.  Pink lemonade, strawberry and yes, blueberry too. 

So in honor of summer and national blueberry month I decided to make a batch of homemade  blueberry lemonade.  You should have seen his face when I told him, it was like his face on Christmas morning.  He couldn't wait, and of course, he was right by my side throughout the whole process.  He poured, stirred, mashed and strained.  Oh, and yes, he had the most important job as well, the taste test.  Needless to say it passed with flying colors.
This lemonade is deliciously perfect.  It's packed with blueberry flavor thanks to the blueberry infused simply syrup, the blueberry puree and the fresh squeezed lemon juice with the pulp and all.  It's sweet and perfectly tart.  Everything anyone (especially my little guy) could want in a glass of ice cold lemonade.
This lemonade is the perfect beverage to sip on while beating the heat on a hot summer day, during a cookout, or by the pool.  While it's perfect as is, it can be made special for adults by adding a splash or two of vodka...blueberry or lemon vodka would go perfectly.  To make it a little fizzy, add a splash of soda water and you'll have the ultimate summer cocktail.

The BEST Blueberry Lemonade

The simple syrup-
1 Cup water
1/2 Cup + 1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 Cup blueberries
Rind of one lemon

Blueberry puree-
1 Cup blueberries
1/2 Cup water
1 Tsp sugar

Zest of one lemon
1 Cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 Cup water
1/2 Cup sugar

Vodka-plain, blueberry or lemon
Soda water


For the simple syrup-

Place water, sugar and blueberries in a medium saucepan and place over medium heat bring to a simmer.  Reduce, stirring gradually and gently pressing the blueberries to smash them, until the sugar is dissolved, about 5 minutes.  Once the sugar is dissolved, remove from heat and add the lemon rind and allow set for 5 minutes, or until completing the puree and lemonade portions.  Strain the syrup through a sieve and discard the blueberries and lemon rind.
For the puree-

Combine water, blueberries and sugar in a blender and blend until mixture is pureed, about 30 seconds.

For the lemonade-

Pour the blueberry puree in a large pitcher and add the lemon zest, lemon juice, water and sugar and stir to combine.  Add the simple syrup and stir to combine.  Place in the refrigerator and chill until ready to serve.

To serve-
Fill a glass or mason jar with ice and 1/4 cup frozen blueberries, pour the lemonade over the ice.  Garnish with a lemon slice and serve.  For adults, add 1/2-1 ounce of vodka and a splash of soda water.

Recipe source: A Lynsey original

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