My sister and brother-in-law came over to our house for dinner to celebrate my sister’s birthday recently. Whenever they come over for dinner, I’m usually in charge of drinks. Which basically entails me telling everyone what the drink options are and asking what they would like and then fixing everyone’s drinks for them.
In our house we have everything for Shirley Temples on hand almost always, but sometimes we like to get everything for a drink that we don’t have as often, like one of our favorites, Chocolate Mint Italian Cream Sodas. I’ll have to share that recipe sometime, it’s amazing. But this time I decided to make Strawberry Lemonade. I got this recipe from one of my summer issues of Everyday Food, you can find it here. And of course, I have it copied below, as well.
Emeril’s Strawberry Lemonade
Look for fragrant, bright red strawberries with green caps.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Yield Serves 4 to 6
1 cup sugar
1 cup fresh lemon juice (from 6 lemons), plus 1 lemon, sliced, for serving
1 pound strawberries (3 cups), hulled and halved
16 ounces seltzer, chilled
Mint sprigs, for serving
In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups water and sugar to a boil over medium-high. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves, 2 minutes. Transfer to a pitcher and refrigerate until cool, about 45 minutes. Add lemon juice and stir to combine.
In a blender, puree strawberries until smooth. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into pitcher with lemon syrup, pressing on solids. Stir well to combine.
To serve, stir in seltzer and divide among ice-filled glasses. Top with lemon slices and mint.
Tips for Cooking with Kids: Let the young ones measure the sugar and juice the lemons. They can also help blend the berries and strain the puree before mixing together the finished drink.
This Strawberry Lemonade was really fantastic! The whole family loved it. It was just how lemonade is supposed to be, sweet with a lemony tartness that is delectable, and the fresh strawberries add a lovely flavor to an already wonderful summer drink. Definitely a great drink for the 4th of July, or any summer occasion.
I learned that this is definitely a drink that should be completely made before guests arrive, which I know may seem obvious, but I only figured that out after I did it the wrong way. I had made the sugar syrup ahead of time, but I did everything else after my sister and brother-in-law had arrived, and it took me awhile to get it ready. Lesson learned: learn to plan ahead.
I think I will have to make this drink a summer tradition, since it is the perfect summer refresher!
I made these cookies to have during the drive to Branson. I had wanted to try them for quite a while, but just hadn’t baked them yet. As far as I can remember, this is the first time that I’ve ever made oatmeal raisin cookies. The go-to cookie in my house has always been chocolate chip cookies, but recently I thought, “oatmeal raisin cookies sounds so good, I have to make some.” In my opinion, they made a great road trip snack.
Any dried fruit can be substituted for the raisins. Be sure the cookies are completely cool before storing in an airtight container.
Yield: Makes about 3 dozen
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3 tablespoons milk
2 large eggs
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup raisins
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, cinnamon, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter with both sugars, and beat until light and fluffy. Add vanilla, milk, and eggs, and mix well. Add flour mixture, and beat until just combined. Remove bowl from the electric mixer, and stir in oats and raisins. Place dough in the refrigerator until firm, about 2 hours or overnight.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper, and set aside. Scoop out 2 tablespoons of dough, and shape into a ball; place on one of the prepared sheets. Repeat with remaining dough, spacing balls 3 inches apart. Press down to flatten into 2-inch diameters.
Transfer to the oven, and bake until golden but still soft in center, 16 to 18 minutes, rotating the pans between oven shelves halfway through baking. Remove from oven, and place on a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.
The dough was very tasty cold, right out of the refrigerator!
All lined up and ready to go!
All that's left is to wait 20 minutes 'til I can try them...
My first homemade Oatmeal Raisin Cookies!
These cookies were wonderful! They were thick, and soft, and chewy, and delightful in flavor. I made mine with a heaping 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. I stored them in a freezer bag with a couple of slices of bread to keep the cookies moist and they were still good a week later, just as the recipe says they will be.