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Apr 23, 2009 08:55 PM

Fresh lemonade

I had a delicious Arnold Palmer this weekend that the bartender shook in a martini shaker so it was nice and frothy. This is going to be a summer favorite at our house so some questions about about the best way to make fresh lemonade in quantity, please.

Could I get by with Real Lemon juice for everyday instead of squeezing my own?
I have bar syrup. Is that the same as simple syrup which I see in some lemonade recipes?
Any ideas about who has the best prices for lemons? Costco I presume.

Thanks so much.

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  1. Bar syrup = simple syrup.

    Please don't use ReaLemon. Fresh-squeezed is best, fresh-squeezed that's frozen is okay.

    For lemons, this might be a good time to find some bargains at local farmer's markets there in Pasadena. Up here in Sacramento, my Ponderosa tree is dropping fruit faster than I can use it (and what fruit - cantaloupe-sized lemons, each of which gives more than a cup of juice), and my limited crop of Meyers is just finishing up.

    1 Reply
    1. re: alanbarnes

      Yes bar syrup equals simple syrup. I like to make my own and I go less on the sugar. Just me, some people make a very heavy simple syrup.

      Meyer lemons are the best if you can get them, fresh absolutely as alanbarnes mentioned. Definitely fresh ok. When my Dads tree is in season which seems like always I have more lemons than I could possibly use. I free in ice cubes and then freeze. They are great to make to use, just thaw and fresh juice. Right now I have lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit. Easy way to freeze lots of juice for your lemonade. Real lemon, you could but I wouldn't for a drink where lemon is the star. I may use real lemon if it was just a touch for a bit of flavor but not for lemonade.

    2. Fresh is great if you can get them.

      I make it using that Real Lemon from Costco and add a packet or two of Splenda to a liter of water. Great drink with no carbs or calories.

      Drinking lemondade may reduce kidney stones.

      1. Using Tropicana Sugar-free Lemonade is another alternative if time, avail. of lemons is an issue. While traveling on vacation w/friends we used the Tropicana "aid" with terrific results.

        1 Reply
        1. re: HillJ

          That is true, it is pretty descent. There is a frozen brand which Sams or BJ's had. A concentrate, but sugar free and it was pretty good. I have used that for big parties when I am making a lot rather than using all of my private stash.

        2. Real Lemon is kinda gross.

          Why not go to Costco, buy a couple large bags of lemons, squeeze them, remove the seeds and then freeze them in ice cube trays?

          Then, when you're in the mood, grab a couple of lemon cubes, plop them in a tall glass, pour in some simple syrup, add cold water and stir - et voila - Easy Lemonade!

          1. Make your own simple syrup - it's so much cheaper and it's ridiculously easy. You'll kick yourself for ever having bought it. equal parts sugar and water in a pan. Bring to boil, remove from heat and stir until sugar dissolves. Cool and then refrigerate for up to one month. You can also infuse your simple syrup with things like fresh herbs. Lemonade made w/ rosemary simple syrup is to die for.

            Just say "no" to Real Lemon.

            7 Replies
            1. re: lynnlato

              Mint too with the syrup is a favorite of mine with lime and lemon combo. And then of course a little rum too

              1. re: lynnlato

                Yes, and keep it in a squeeze bottle so you can easily make a serving of whatever you want. It comes in handy.

                1. re: chowser

                  Reminder: If you make a big batch, homemade simple syrup should be kept in the refrig.

                  1. re: chowser

                    I love those like ketchup or mustard squeeze bottles you find in a diner, I bought a pack of six at Walmart for 50 cents each. I use them like Guy Fierre for olive oil, red wine, etc etc. 4-5 of those fit better in my fridge or cabinet they the actual bottles. Mine came with little caps so it keeps them fresh. I hesitate using them but I really like them. I fill them with the most used items. Simple syrup is one and a flavored oil is another.

                    I had a BBQ a few weeks back and I was making mojitos and Island Rum pumch as the main drinks so I had many many containers of my simple syrup infused with mint and another with lemon and orange zest .

                    1. re: kchurchill5

                      You guys are amazing!! I woke up to 11 replies to my lemonade query - overnight. Can't wait to try all you suggest and many thanks.

                      P.S. We planted 26 tangerine trees last year and I could kick myself for not doing one lemon and one lime!

                      1. re: mocro

                        It's really good if you use carbonated water to make the lemonade--kind of a natural soda.

                        1. re: chowser

                          That is very good.

                          Sometimes when I run short of lemons, I will use a store bought good oj and my lemon and a dash of grenadine and freeze. Then thaw and add to some club soda as you mentioned and it is a great easy drink. I've done that for brunch, thawed my cubes and then added to champagne or sparkling wine. Really good and easy.

                          And is you just want a little flavor, just add the frozen cubes to carbonated water, as it melts it is a natural flavor which is great. Better than any bottled water you can buy.