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Some things are better when you make them the hard way, like Mac N' Cheese. I'm still undecided whether this lemonade was as amazing as it should be considering how much work it required. Don't get me wrong, it was the best strawberry lemonade I've ever had, not too sweet, not too tart, very refreshing. But, it took me like a million hours to juice all those lemons, not to mention how sore my right arm was afterward. If you had an automatic juicer, then it would take you no time at all.
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so many lemons!
But, I'll let you be the judge. This is a great drink for a special occasion. I made my batch for a picnic and had to make it a day in advance. Doing this made the lemonade lose all its fizziness, so I wouldn't recommend this. Also, be sure to drink the beverage within 2 days, lemon juice gets super bitter after that time.

Strawberry Lemonade
adapted from Annie's Eats
Yields about 1 gallon

Strawberry Syrup:2 cups chopped strawberries
4 tbsp sugar
2 tsp lemon juice (1 lemon)
4 tbsp water
Pinch of salt

Lemonade:2 cups very hot water
1 1/3 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice (this required 17 lemons, buy 20 to be on the safe side)
9 cups cold sparkling water or seltzer

First you need to make the strawberry syrup. Put strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, water and salt in a processor or blender.  Mix until it becomes more liquidy than pasty.  Press the syrup through a mesh strainer to remove all the seeds and pulp. You will be left with a pure liquid and a lot of strawberry guts. (Those strawberry guts are delicious, so I wouldn't throw them away. I mixed them with water and made strawberry ice cubes out of them to serve with the lemonade. I later decided this was a bad idea because the strawberries seeds would get in the drink. But it was very tasty nonetheless!)

Set the strawberry syrup aside and start on the lemonade. First we need to make a simple syrup. Heat 2 cups water in a sauce pan. Before it boils, but once it's hot, add the sugar to the water, stirring until it is complete dissolved. Let cool before pouring the water into a pitcher. Do not pour very hot water into a glass pitcher! I lost one of my favorite pitchers this way, it shattered!Once water is safely deposited into the pitcher, stir in the lemon juice, sparkling water, and strawberry syrup. Enjoy!

Let me know if you try this! What are your favorite summer beverages? Share in the comments.
 


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