I was first introduced to pink lemonades when my husband brought home a bottle or two from Trader Joe’s. I remember saying to myself, “Wait a minute, lemons are yellow.” I didn’t really care since they were so delicious and quenched my thirst after a gulp-full. I used strawberries to make this strawberry lemonade or pink lemonade. Lemons are not too common in the Philippines and people stay away from them because they are expensive. We have an alternative though, and they are called “calamansi.” They sit between a lemon and lime, but definitely more tart in taste! A little goes a long way, maybe that’s why they are only about 35 in diameter. If you can make lemonade with lemons, then we can definitely make calamansi juice with calamansi! (watch out for my recipe in the future.)
Going back to strawberry lemonade, I believe you can turn your lemonade pink by using berries or even food colorings can give them their distinct rosy color. I chose to use strawberry puree and I found this perfect recipe from Jennifer Perillo’s new cookbook: Homemade with Love: Simple Scratch Cooking from In Jennie’s Kitchen. There are so many good stuff in this cookbook, from making fool-proof pie crust to making your own condiments.
This strawberry lemonade can be made ahead of time to skip the chilling time. To add sweetness, the recipe includes how to make a simple syrup. It’s called simple syrup for a reason – all you need is sugar and water to make one! This will yield about 1 1/4 cups. I use this syrup to naturally sweeten my tea, iced coffee, or lemonade.
- 1 pint (about 200 grams) Strawberries, washed and hulled
- 1 cup (250 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 4 large lemons)
- 1/2 cup *Simple syrup, plus more to taste (recipe follows)
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar
- 1 cup (250 ml) water
- Combine sugar and water in a small pot. Bring to boil over medium heat, stir occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Once the sugar is completely dissolved, continue to cook at rolling boil for about a minute. Remove the pot from the stove and set aside to completely cool. Transfer to a covered jar, and store in the fridge for up to a month. (yields about 1 1/4 cups)
- Puree the strawberries in a food processor, and process until smooth. Pour the puree through a fine sieve to remove the seeds and push down with a spoon to extract as much juice as possible. This should yield about 3/4 cups.
- In a large pitcher,combine the strawberry puree, lemon juice and simple syrup with 4 cups of water. Stir well to mix. Add more simple syrup a tablespoon at a time to adjust the sweetness to your liking.
- Refrigerate until well chilled before serving.
- **Makes about 6 1/2 cups (1.5 L)