A few weekends ago I had some friends visiting me in Collingwood. This blog post was inspired by my friends’ young daughter Zoe. During dinner she shyly asked me how to make lemonade. I asked her “Do you know the first ingredient?” She of course said “Lemons!” I asked her for the next ingredient, but she wasn’t sure. So, I said honey. Then water and ice.
The next morning after breakfast, Zoe very sweetly asked me if we could make lemonade, which brought a big smile to my face. Out came 2 fresh lemons, a big jar of raw honey, and a 1 quart mason jar.
We juiced the lemons, added a few spoonfuls of honey, some water and ice. Then we shook the mason jar with all our might to get the honey to dissolve. That’s it. Fresh lemonade made with wholesome ingredients in 5 minutes.
To make pink lemonade, take a handful of raspberries or cherries and press the juice out with a spoon through a small mesh strainer. Use blueberries or blackberries for a nice blue or purple lemonade.
If you compare this simple homemade lemonade to some store bought mass-produced lemonade, you are getting about a quarter the amount of sugar in a 1 cup serving. In most mass-produced beverages, the sugar is coming from high fructose corn syrup, a man-made super sweet form of sugar–watch this video if you want to learn about the health effects of excessive fructose consumption. Raw unpasteurized honey on the other hand is completely natural and besides containing sugar, it comes with a variety of trace vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients. Raw honey is known for many health benefits including antiviral and antibacterial properties.
The lemon juice in industrially made lemonade was squeezed months ago and went through heavy processing to make sure that every single batch of lemonade tastes identical. This processing destroys or damages many of the nutrients in the lemon juice. Why not get your lemon juice straight from fresh lemons? Buy a bag and store them in your fridge for several weeks. Fresh squeezed lemon juice is an excellent source of vitamin C and the electrolyte mineral potassium. On these hot summer days, it’s important to replenish your electrolyte minerals often. Whole fruits and vegetables are the best sources of potassium.
Finally, many store bought lemonade brands contain food colouring. These laboratory made chemicals are linked with many health issues, including hyperactivity. The juice of a few fresh berries make the best all natural food colouring money can buy! The juice contains a variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Cherries are a very good source of vitamin C and potassium.
Fresh squeezed lemonade takes just minutes to make and is perfect for these hot summer days!
Zoe’s Pink Lemonade Recipe
2 tbsp unpasteurized honey
1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (2-3 lemons)
handful of fresh cherries, pits removed
handful of ice cubes
- Add honey and lemon juice to a 1 quart mason jar.
- Place cherries in a small metal strainer over a small bowl and use a spoon to press out juice. Add juice to mason jar.
- Add ice to jar and fill up with water.
- Screw lid on tight and shake well until honey is dissolved. You can use a spoon to help scrape the honey stuck to the bottom of the jar.
Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.