Ah, lemonade. I really enjoy lemonade in the summer, it's so refreshing over ice, and it's so easy to make. We always have lemons in my house––whether they're for squeezing over cooked fish or into a glass of water, making salad dressings, or natural remedies for ailments, my family is constantly using them, so we always keep our fridge full of them. When I was in Italy, one restaurant we were at put a few basil leaves into the water glasses brought to our table. I'd never seen that done before, but I was in Italy, and Italians tend to know what they're doing when it comes to food and drink, so I didn't question it. It was tasty, I didn't think much of it, it was just water with a more refreshing flavor to it. But, the longer it sat, the more the flavor of the basil seeped into the water, and the more I tastier it became! I tried to make basil water a more common occurrence when I was at school, and eventually decided to try adding it to some lemonade. The flavors are so good together. I like this lemonade even less sweet than a normal lemonade so the flavor of the basil can shine through. I even got my Paleo-hating youngest brother to drink this, and guess what? He loved it!
Prep Time: 8-10 min Chill Time: 3 hr Total Time: 3 hr 8-10min Yield: 8 cups
1 cup lemon juice (4-5 large lemons juiced and strained)
6½ cups water
½ cup fresh basil, packed
⅓ cup honey, or to taste
Add lemon juice and 6 cups of water to a large pitcher.
In a microwave safe bowl or measuring cup, combine the remaining ½ cup of water and the honey. Microwave for 15-20 seconds, or until honey is easily mixed into the water.
Pour the honey mixture into the pitcher and stir well.
Crush the basil leaves between your palms, to help release their flavor, and add to the pitcher.
Refrigerate lemonade for 3 hours, then strain to remove basil leaves, serve over ice, and enjoy!
*Even if you are not ready to drink the lemonade after 3 hours in the fridge, remove the basil leaves at that point, or the flavor will be too overwhelming.