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Fruit and Herb Lemonade

Fruit and Herb Lemonade

I was something of a petite entrepreneur when I was a child. I’d setup elaborate bake sales and lemonade stands at the top of our driveway (which just so happened to be along a very popular bike route in our town). I’d prepare an assortment of baked goods, including cookies, brownies, fudge, etc. as well as a huge pitcher of lemonade, and wait for the thirsty customers to roll by.

Lemonade Stand

Thanks, Mom, for discovering this gem!

I can only imagine how my profits would have soared if I had just looked beyond the tub of powdered lemonade.

No matter your age, homemade lemonade is a true joy. The subtle sweet-and-tart flavor of fresh lemons is something that can’t be reproduced in powdered form. And while, granted, nothing is as easy as dissolving a spoonful of powder in a pitcher of water, making lemonade from scratch is not much harder.

For an even more impressive spread, try these unique lemonade variations, combining fresh summer fruit and herb-infused sugar syrups. With distinctive combinations like peach and thyme, blackberry and mint, and even tomato and basil, summer just got a whole lot cooler. The tomato basil is particularly unique—the lemons and sugar turning a typically savory fruit into a sweet libation. Try it! It’s better than it sounds. But don’t stop there, try combining different fruits and herbs—I’m thinking lavender, lemon verbena, or rosemary could be incredible—the possibilities are endless!

Fruit and Herb Lemonade

Yield: 6 servings

Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup lemon juice (from about 4 to 6 large lemons)
  • 3 cups cold water
  • ice

For Peach Thyme:

  • 2 peaches, peeled* and pitted
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme

For Tomato Basil:

  • 1 large (8oz) tomato, peeled* and cored
  • 2 tablespoons packed basil leaves

For Blackberry Mint:

  • 1 cup blackberries (or blueberries)
  • 2 tablespoons packed mint leaves

Directions:

  1. Combine sugar and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan set over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat. Add herbs; cover and let steep for 5 minutes. Remove herbs and transfer to a glass jar or heat-proof container and refrigerate until cool, at least 20 minutes or until ready to use.
  2. Blend fruit in a blender or food processor until smooth; strain through a fine mesh sieve or run through a food mill to remove any seeds and excess solids.
  3. Combine fruit purée with lemon juice in a large pitcher. Stir in 3 cups cold water and sugar syrup to taste. Pour over ice.

*To easily peel peaches and/or tomatoes, bring a pot of water to a boil. Cut an X-shaped slit in the bottom of fruit. Boil for 30 seconds, then transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl filled with ice water. When fruit is cool enough to handle, the skins should slide right off.

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28 CommentsLeave a Comment →

  1. 1
    Posted On July 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    That’s awesome about the Tennessean, Lindsay! Congrats!

    Reply

  2. 2
    Posted On July 11, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    I used to have lemonade stands too (koolaid) but I think we probably went into debt…at a nickle or a dime and 3 customers all afternoon, I dont think there was much profit. lol

    Congrats on your Tenn feature!

    Reply

  3. 3
    Posted On July 11, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    they look refreshing!!!

    Reply

  4. 4
    Posted On July 11, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    Gourmet lemonade–how far the stands have evolved! My grands love lemonade and with all the fresh fruits and herbs available right now, these would be perfect for the warm weather. XOXO

    Reply

  5. 5
    Posted On July 11, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    Blackberry mint sounds amazing!

    Reply

  6. 6
    Posted On July 11, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    Looks so refreshing!!

    Reply

  7. 7
    Franzi
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 4:28 am

    What happens to the refrigerated herbs? Do you blend them in as well, once they are cooled?

    Reply

    • Franzi
      Posted On July 12, 2012 at 4:33 am

      oops, i’m sorry. you refrigerated the herb water, not the herbs themselves…

  8. 8
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 10:06 am

    That picture is so funny. Definitely a great find.

    Reply

  9. 9
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 11:26 am

    Peach thyme lemonade sounds heavenly!

    Reply

  10. 10
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 11:44 am

    Finding wonderful non-savory dishes/drinks to use herbs is great! Thank you for the recipe. I will have to try all of them I guess since I have all of those herbs growing in my garden out back!

    Reply

  11. 11
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    What fun summer drinks! :)

    Reply

  12. 12
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    ohhhh this looks and sounds heavenly! love the grown up flavors!

    Reply

  13. 13
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Love these varieties to regular lemonade!

    Reply

  14. 14
    Posted On July 12, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    Looks wonderful! I really love the childhood photo too :)

    Reply

  15. 15
    Posted On July 13, 2012 at 6:38 am

    These are all beautiful, but I REALLY want to try the tomato basil one. What a unique and fabulous idea!

    Reply

  16. 16
    Posted On July 13, 2012 at 10:48 am

    My favorite would be the blackberry mint! It sounds like a great combination of flavors and very refreshing I bet!

    Reply

  17. 17
    Posted On July 13, 2012 at 11:09 am

    I loved lemonade stands when I was a kid, and can still appreciate the perfect simplicity of lemonade in the summer. Your flavor twists are such fun! I would be all over that peach thyme.

    Reply

  18. 18
    Posted On July 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    YUMMMMM! :)

    Reply

  19. 19
    Posted On July 13, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    that blackberry mint sounds so good right now

    Reply

  20. 20
    Posted On July 15, 2012 at 7:32 am

    Congrats on the feature! And how adorable is that old photo?! You look the same :)

    And I’m probably going to need a dozen of these lemonades today, mmk? Thanks :)

    Reply

  21. 21
    Posted On July 15, 2012 at 7:57 am

    I love *real* lemonade but to add fruit and herbs is very special indeed. I had a twinge of homesick when I saw the newspaper mention. I went to UTK and raised my kids in Knoxville before moving to Australia. I really miss Tennessee. :)

    Reply

  22. 22
    Posted On July 15, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    This is very creative lemonade, Lindsay. I especially like the tomato basil.

    Reply

  23. 23
    Posted On July 15, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Already an entrepreneur at such a young age – looks like your business mind started early! I’ve been craving fruity herby lemonades non-stop lately and will definitely be trying your versions! :)

    Reply

  24. 24
    Posted On July 17, 2012 at 8:44 am

    Congratulations on the feature, and what a beautiful summer recipe! Love the creative combinations!

    Reply

  25. 25
    Cousin Julie
    Posted On July 19, 2012 at 7:39 pm

    You as a petit entrepreneur is an understatement. Gigi (Grams) still has your bag of marbles! Always knew you’d do some fab things, cousin! Can’t wait to see you next week :) xo

    Reply

  26. 26
    Posted On July 25, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Refreshing idea for wedding guests. Great match for a herb theme wedding. Thank you

    Reply

  27. 27
    Posted On August 16, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    These look sooo refreshing! Can’t wait to try : )

    Reply

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