Tastes Like That Good Old Fashioned Lemonade

image from http://www.istockphoto.com

While I’m away on my imaginary vacation, I’m leaving the pantry stocked with posts from Exit 51 that would have been part of the Flashback Friday series. The following originally appeared on 7/17/09 at Exit 51.

Tastes Like That Good Old Fashioned Lemonade

In my childhood, a container of Country Time mix was the closest we ever got to homemade lemonade.  You remember Country Time, don’t you?  It “tastes like that good old fashioned lemonade”, or so they say.  I say it tastes like: Sugar, Fructose, Citric Acid (Provides Tartness), Natural Flavor, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Maltodextrin, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Sodium Citrate (Controls Acidity), Magnesium Oxide (Prevents Caking), Calcium Fumarate, Soy Lecithin, Artificial Color, Yellow 5 Lake, Tocopherol (Preserves Freshness).  How’s that good old fashioned lemonade? Call me silly but I thought lemonade was lemon juice, water, and sugar.


I never really thought about making lemonade until Deb at Smitten Kitchen posted her Watermelon Lemonade.  And then, of course, I had to try it immediately.  Much the same way that “when E.F. Hutton talks, people listen”, when Smitten Kitchen posts something so beautiful in its simplicity, I have to try it.  And you should too.  But don’t take my word for it, try it yourself and see.

Watermelon Lemonade

Smitten Kitchen Adaptation of Bubby’s

These quantities make enough for two single servings.  Really, if you’re going to go to the trouble of pureeing some watermelon, you might as well puree the whole thing.  I put the ingredients into separate containers so that all I have to do to refill my pitcher is measure them out and mix them together.

If you don’t have a juicer, lemons are easier to juice when they are warmed slightly.  Considering that I juiced about 5 pounds of lemons for this recipe and am sans juicer, I improvised.  Here’s how – place four whole lemons in the microwave and nuke them for about a minute.  Let them sit on a plate for another minute or so and then CAREFULLY cut them in half.  The microwave superheats the juice inside which likes to spurt out as you cut the lemons open.  I’ll say that again…BEWARE. HOT. LEMON. JUICE.  Using a handheld reamer, the lemon halves will now easily give up their juice and pulp.  As Ina would say, how easy is that?  Then again, Ina has a juicer.

  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh watermelon puree, strained through a coarse strainer to remove seeds
  • 3 tablespoons simple syrup (recipe below)
  • 3/4 cup cold water

Stir watermelon puree, lemon juice, simple syrup, and water together.  Serve over ice.  If you’re in a party sort of a mood, add a shot of your favorite vokda.

Simple Syrup

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water

Simmer sugar and water together until sugar has completely dissolved.  Let cool.  Store leftover syrup in the refrigerator.

If you’re feeling especially sassy, gently flavor your simple sugar by adding a bit of herb like fresh rosemary or thyme as you heat and cool the sugar and water.

{printable recipe}

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2 thoughts on “Tastes Like That Good Old Fashioned Lemonade

  1. I remember makiing REAL lemonade one time when I was about 13. ( I was not allowed to touch the stove before then) and when my mother saw the mess one teenager who has no friggin idea what she is about can make in one small kitchen, well I was banished again until it became a more important thing to have dinner on the table when the male parent came home.
    Guess who got tapped for that duty? and I may add without the benefit of prior training!

    that was my one and only brush with the wrath of the female parental unit ( vis a vis the kitchen)

    there wa an incident later on when the male parental unit decided that we were out to poison him and decided to cook ( I have been told that he excelled in cooking during WWII at the Great Lakes Naval Base)……his rockfish with lemon and onion was baked in the pyrex dish ( without benefit of sufficient liquid. ) this cracked the pyrex dish and when my mother was finished.well……………….both Pops and i were permanently banished from the kitchen. To this day! My sister will go in and try to help mom cook but mom bitches the whole time and really tears her up after she leaves. Easier for me to sit in the living room and pretend in that house. We are 10 years old forever! LOL!

    this recipe however will turn up in my kitchen before the summer is over……sounds like a beginner recipe for a watermelon margarita……..have learned to love them!

    1. Emily, sometimes the path of least resistance is the best approach. And yes, this beverage is just screaming for some lovely Patron Silver Tequila.

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