In Thistle Kitchen, I always have lots of bald lemons. LOTS. I use the zest in many of my products. Boring pasta? I add lemon zest. Inevitably, my crisper drawer ends up full of lemons and nothing else. Lemonade was the obvious solution to my crisper drawer situation. But not super sugary lemonade. Not lemonade that was unnaturally fluorescent. This lemonade, sweetened with raw honey to create a wonderfully tart concoction:
And then I got a little creative. I wanted pink lemonade, but raspberries are not in season yet, and there are no local strawberries, either. So I used hibiscus tea to make Honey & Hibiscus Lemonade
You like, right?
12-13 Lemons, juiced (this should be about 2 cups)
2/3 cup Honey
3 cups Water
In a small saucepan, combine the honey and the water. Heat the water and honey on medium-low, while whisking the mixture. Heat until the honey and the water have combined into a very thin syrup. Allow to cool about 20 minutes. Combine the lemon juice and the honey syrup. Mix and refrigerate until cool or ready to serve. Stir the mixture before serving. Garnish with a mint spring or a few lemon slices.
Hibiscus Tea Syrup
2 cups Water
1/2 cup Cane Sugar
2 oz Hibiscus (Jamaica) tea or 6 Red Zinger tea bags
Combine all in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir occasionally until all of the sugar has dissolved and the syrup is a very dark magenta. Allow to cool. This will keep in the fridge for up to two weeks. It is lovely when mixed in black iced tea, and makes a great topping for fruit salad.
Honey & Hibiscus Lemonade
Fill desired glasses 3/4 of the way full with lemonade. Then pour in a scant 1/4 cup of hibiscus tea syrup. The syrup will sink to the bottom, giving the drink a lovely two-toned effect. Or you can stir, add some ice cubes and a sprig of mint like I have above.
As always, our beautiful photographs were taken by Nicole Hodac.