May 5, 2014

Lavender Mint Lemonade

The forecast highs for today and tomorrow are 104. No. Just…no. It's MAY for goodness sakes. I expect this in July, but May??

The pool hasn't even opened for the summer yet.

End of rant.

So while I had planned to make lemon curd, and therefore yummy baked goods this week to post I gave up. It's time to call an audible on all cooking plans this week because my oven is not going on if I can help it for the next two days. The roast chicken that was going to be our dinner tonight is getting bumped to the end of the week when it will be a comparatively chilly 93.

Instead of lemon curd and it's ensuing frilly baked goods, I bring you refreshing lemonade.

It is so easy to make, and a really fun way to get the kids into the kitchen in the summer. I amped up the flavor here with some lavender and mint to make it a touch more sophisticated, but you could easily leave those out of the recipe if you want.

I think this is the base for all sorts of lovely summertime treats…you could freeze it to make popsicles, add some gin or vodka to make an adults only version or make a really killer Arnold Palmer.

If this heat keeps up, there's a good chance I will try all of those by Friday!

What's your favorite way to cool down when the weather heats up? 

Lavender Mint Lemonade

1/4 cup mint leaves
1/4 cup culinary lavender
2 cups sugar
2 cups water

1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
5-6 cups cold water

To start, make a simple syrup. Put the sugar and water in a saucepan and boil. When it comes to a steady boil, add the lavender and mint. To infuse the mint and lavender you have a few options. I used an oversized loose tea/spice infuser (like this one), but you could also tie them inside a bundle of cheesecloth or just add them directly to the water/sugar mixture and strain it at the end.

Boil until the mixture reduces slightly and thickens so that it will coat the back of a spoon dipped into it.
Take off the heat and let come to room temperature. At this point, remove the herbs by taking the infuser out or straining.

Add the lemon juice and 1 cup of simple syrup to a pitcher and stir in 3-4 cups water. Taste and then continue adding water slowly until you are happy with the flavor, usually about 5 cups for me.

Any leftover simple syrup can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container.


  1. Lavender must be the hot new thing - I swear two days ago I didn't even realize you could eat it/cook with it, and now I've been seeing it everywhere! What inspired you to try it?

  2. Yum! And you can send a few degrees our way! We are having a heck of a time warming up around here!

  3. I made lavender lemon bars a while ago and am still swimming in culinary lavender! I just keep brainstorming ways to use it up, but the lemon and lavender combo is one of my favorites. I also had a little mint leftover from a forgotten attempt at Mint Juleps this weekend so I figured I'd throw it in too :)

  4. You can have it all :) In another month it won't feel quite so miserable, but we just had the most perfect 75 degree day on Friday and it's hard to forget those!

  5. Thanks! I've been happily guzzling this all day, though my four year old is still suspicious because it isn't yellow enough to be "real" lemonade :)

  6. 104! Holy cow. It was 65 here in New England today. I know our heat will come.
    Lemonade is totally my favorite summer drink. In fact I have little craving for it until that first hot day. Although we haven't had one in 2014, yet!

  7. This looks lovely! What, exactly, do you mean by culinary lavender? I grow my own lavender in the backyard (organically--no pesticides or anything). Can I just use that? Or are you sourcing it from somewhere? Thanks!

  8. Your own lavender sounds perfect! If you buy it you just want to make sure it hasn't been treated with anything you can't consume (like pesticides, etc.) I bought mine on Etsy, and I've seen it in specialty food shops and some grocery stores too.

  9. It's funny how you adjust to different temps in new places-I remember growing up in New England and whining about 90…now I'm a wimp about the cold when I visit there in the winter!


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