You know how after the heat index reaches a certain point your brain tends to focus on a single thing? Of late mine has been lemonade. I’ve devoted hours to lemonade fantasies, and once I worked up the energy to peel myself off my chair, hours more perfecting my technique. I was lucky to have a stash of lemon juice I’d thrown in the freezer last winter when the Meyer lemons were in season. Nine or ten days into the heat wave, that’s gone but now I have moved on to herbal versions of my drink. Rosemary lemonade. Lavender lemonade. They are sublime. Perfection. Ice cold they make sitting on the deck a pleasure again, heat and humidity nearly forgettable.
Here’s how to make it.
Boil 2 cups of water and pour over a 2″ sprig of rosemary OR 1 heaping tablespoon of lavender flowers. Steep for 5-8 minutes and then remove herbs. Add 1/3 c. sugar or honey and stir to dissolve. Pour into a 1 quart jar and add 1/4 c. lemon juice. Fill the rest of the way with cold water. Chill and taste, adjusting lemon and sweetness to taste. Serve over ice, with a small fresh sprig of rosemary or lavender if you like.
If this recipe sounds good to you, you’ll be happy to know that July is lavender season! The harvest is in, and this year we have several new lavender farmers selling their products through our catalog. There are dozens of uses for lavender, fresh, dried, and oil. I am a fan of them all! From fresh bundles to dried buds, salves to sachets, LocalHarvest farmers make hundreds of lavender products. What’s your pleasure?
Until next month, take good care, eat well — and breathe in the lavender!