Strawberry & Mint Lemonade
A friend of mine whipped this recipe up at our Memorial Day cookout. It's so refreshing and tastes like summer. Keep it virgin to serve the kids or add some vodka (or your liquor of choice) to make this a delicious summer cocktail for the grown folks.
Here's a tip: make a big pitcher of it (we made about a gallon) and leave it virgin, mixing in your adult beverage of choice on a glass by glass basis to allow everyone to enjoy this deliciously refreshing recipe!
Cocktail / Mocktail
16 oz. strawberries, tops removed
The juice of 15 lemons
1 cup of simple syrup (or more to taste)
5 - 6 cups sparkling water (or more to taste if you prefer it more watered down)
8 - 10 fresh mint leaves
Vodka or other liquor (omit vodka for mocktail)
2 cups water
2 cups sugar (I prefer Demerara)
To Make the Simple Syrup
Combine 2 cups of water with 2 cups of sugar in a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat. Cook until the sugar completely dissolves, stirring as needed.
Remove from heat and allow to cool.
To Make the Mocktail / Cocktail
Add the strawberries into a large mixing bowl. Using a muddler, smush the strawberries until you've got mostly juice with small bits/lumps of strawberries.
Add the contents of the mixing bowl into a large cocktail dispenser, ideally one that has a tap. Then add the lemon juice, simple syrup (start with a cup and add more to taste after you've added the rest of the ingredients), and sparkling water. Stir well.
Add in your mint and stir again.
If making this batch entirely boozy, add in your vodka--to taste. (I suggest starting with about 1.5 cups, which is equal to 8 shots).
Place the mixture in the fridge for about 30-60 minutes. Serve cold. (Optional: serve in a glass over ice).