Herbs and spices are a great way to add a lot of flavor to your every day beverages without adding a ton of extra sugar or unnecessary calories, and in some cases adding health benefits. This is the first post in a mini series I’ll be doing on spicing up your drinks, both alcoholic and regular thirst quenchers!

Lavender has an intoxicating scent, with notes of floral, citrus, and fresh mountain air all combined in one beautiful little plant with sage colored needle shaped leaves that support daintily vibrant purple buds. The citrusy notes are what make the lavender pair so well with fresh lemonade. Of course nothing pairs better with lemonade than clear, refreshing vodka! Of course, not all occasions calls for vodka so good judgement can be used here when deciding whether or not to add a nip to your sip.

 

Lavender Lemonade

makes one quart

Ingredients

  • 5  cups water, divided
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup lemon juice (freshly squeezed OR it’s okay to use ReaLemon, it’s my special secret)
  • 1 tablespoon food grade dried lavender buds
  • 1 lemon sliced into rounds, for garnish (optional)

Directions

  1. Bring  2 1/2 cups water and sugar to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
  2. Add the lavender buds and cover with a tight fitting lid. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for at least two minutes.
  3. Fill a pitcher with 2 1/2 cups water and the lemon juice. Stir well.
  4. Use  a cheesecloth lined strainer to catch the lavender buds while adding the lavender-sugar mix to the water-lemon mix. Watch it turn a beautiful pinkish shade.
  5. Drop in the sliced lemon rounds for a fancy look, or cut a slice halfway into the round and perch on the side of the glass.
  6. For optional alcoholic kick, add one shot of vodka to a highball-ish sized glass, or to taste for days when you need a little extra something.

Why is this picture blurry? One too many vodka lavender lemonades, likely.