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I feel like I should apologize in advance for the bazillion photos I took of a relatively simple pink lemonade made with strawberries, rhubarb and just a smidge of raw honey.
But it’s probably not what you think. It’s not so much that pink lemonade is, well, pink lemonade and therefore inherently pretty. It’s actually because photographing beverages is right up there with my other photography nemeses, Brown Food and Glooby Food.
I mean, it’s a hell of a lot easier to photograph something with its own shape than it is to try and make a liquid look appealing. You’d think the color would help, but since I made my pink lemonade with squished up fresh fruit instead of some kind of processed syrup base, it turned out rather deep in color in a way that didn’t really catch the light at all.
So there’s me, standing on a table, above another table… trying to make something flat-yet-pink look like something other than, I don’t know, a pepto-bismol wannabe?
And, yes, I do realize what a ridiculous “problem” pink beverages are to have, but since making shit look pretty is how I pay the bills around here, it’s actually purely pragmatic for me to be complaining about. To myself. From the top of a table.
(Also, my husband apparently only makes ice in our house with the most gigantic ice tray molds I’ve ever seen?! These squares are two inches across. TWO. Big enough for me to freeze entire whole strawberries in there. So if it looks like my pink lemonade should be hanging out in some kind of oversized whiskey glass, it’s his fault. International relations, be damned!)
So you get stuck with a whole bunch of pink lemonade photos. Neener neener. Try not to cuss me out as you have to scroll past them all on your phone.
I promise not to take 17,304,204 photos of pink lemonade ever again. Maybe.
Photography problems aside, this pink lemonade is the best. It’s got sourness and inherent pink-ness from the rhubarb and I was able to keep it down on the added sweetener front because of the insane sweetness of these organic strawberries I’ve been enjoying lately.
Normally, I will never, ever be like “bitches, make this with organic x, y or z” because I really don’t like to a) boss you around or b) promote any kind of food snobbery, because food intolerances and allergies are enough for people to navigate as it is, thankyouverymuch. But. This time, I will. Just this once. Because the amount of flavor in organic berries is literally going to determine whether your strawberry lemonade actually tastes of anything and also because conventional strawberries are magnets for residue of all kinds.
Now, go on with your bad selves. And get a pitcher of this pink lemonade going now. It’s really the queen of porch drinks for the summer. And rhubarb is rapidly coming to its availability end in stores. So, off you go!Print
Summery Strawberry Rhubarb Pink Lemonade
- Prep Time: 10 minutes, plus chillling time
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes, plus chilling time
- Yield: about 5 cups / 1.2 liters; one pitcher
3 cups / 360 g rhubarb, sliced about 1/2 inch or so thick
2 cups / 300 g roughly chopped strawberries
5 cups / 1.2 liters filtered water, divided
1/4 cup / 60 ml raw honey
1 1/4 cups / 300 ml fresh lemon juice
MACERATE: Add the chopped rhubarb and strawberries to a saucepan, along with 2 cups / 480 ml of water. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook until the rhubarb has softened and the water has taken on the pink hue of the fruit, about 10 minutes.
STRAIN: Carefully strain the pulp from the fruit mixture by placing a fine meshed sieve over the mouth of a large pitcher, spooning the hot fruit into the sieve a little at a time. Press down on the softened fruit with the back of a spoon to extract as much liquid as you can from it, then discard the pulp. Pour the remaining liquid from the saucepan through the sieve once all the fruit has been strained.
STIR: Add the raw honey to the warm lemonade base, as well as the lemon juice. Stir to combine, then top off with the remaining 3 cups / 720 ml of water and stir again. Taste and adjust the honey or lemon amounts, to taste. I like to add a pinch of salt here.
CHILL: Place the pitcher in the refrigerator and chill until you’re ready to serve, at least several hours.
SERVE: Fill any remaining head space in the pitcher with ice just before serving and pour over additional ice in individual glasses, if you like. Pretty but totally optional: add slices of lemon and strawberry to the pitcher and / or glass to serve.
Speed things up by adding already chilled, cold water to the lemonade mixture in the pitcher.
Use sparkling water to top off the lemonade for a little extra fizz.