Friday, June 8, 2012
A Summertime Thirst Quencher
Did you know that watermelon has more lycopene per serving than a tomato? Were you aware that there is a National Watermelon Promotion Board?
- Is the lycopene leader among fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Gets it's color from lycopene, an antioxidant.
- Is cholesterol free.
- Is virtually fat free.
- Is very low in sodium.
-Is a natural hydrator. Watermelon is 92% water and a great way to make sure everyone is getting enough fluids.
¼ c. lemon juice
½ c. watermelon (strained through a coarse strainer to remove seeds pureed)
3 tbsp. sugar syrup (see recipe below)
¾ c. cold water
Stir it all together and serve over ice. Garnish it with a thin watermelon or lemon wedge, if you’re feeling fancy.
How to Make Simple Syrup
Simple (or sugar) syrup is, as the name implies, very simple to make and is an essential item to stock in any bar. You will find it in many mixed drinks including Mojitos, Daiquiris and Hurricanes. This sweetener is primarily used as a substitute for raw sugar and adds rich volume, but can be made in a variety of ways.
Making your own simple syrup is also more economical than buying it at the store. You can make as small or as large a batch as you wish and store it in the refrigerator in a well sealed bottle for around 6 months.
Rich Simple Syrup:
With this variation you can use less syrup than a cocktail calls for.
2 parts sugar
1 part water
Bring the water to a boil.
Dissolve the sugar into the boiling water, stirring constantly.
Once the sugar is dissolved completely, remove the pan from the heat. (Note: Do not allow the syrup to boil for too long or the syrup will be too thick.)
Allow to cool completely and thicken, then bottle it.
To prolong the shelf life of your simple syrup, add a little vodka - usually between a tablespoon and an ounce, depending on how large the batch of syrup is.
Replacing white sugar with Demerara sugar (a raw sugar) is a popular alternative because it has a richer sugar flavor. The drawback to using this light brown sugar is that it will alter the color of cocktails and while the difference is noticeable, the taste makes up for it. Another option is to use turbinado or brown sugars.
Bar Simple Syrup:
The easiest way to make simple syrup does not require a stove and can be made in minutes. Simply combine equal parts (1:1) sugar and water in a bottle and shake it until the sugar is completely dissolved. The result is syrup that is thinner than rich simple syrup.
Flavor-infused simple syrups:
Simple syrup can also be infused with flavor and used in a variety of cocktails to add a unique twist.