From The Garden: Home-Squeezed Lemonade!

Let me just start out by saying… if you have never had homemade lemonade (and we’re talking from fresh squeezed lemons) you are missing out my friend! If all you’ve ever known of lemonade is CountryTime, you have my sympathies. I grew up with a lemon tree in our backyard and have fond (or perhaps only partially fond) memories of picking and juicing bag after bag of lemons for a Saturday work project. And, okay, although the labor may not be anyone’s favorite part, the reward is so worth it. So for those who have never had the experience, it’s time to be edumacated (uh… that’s Texan for ‘educated’) in the deliciousness of homemade lemonade.

To make fresh-squeezed lemonade, clearly you’re going to need some fresh lemons. We currently have two lemon trees in our yard, but both are pretty young and still in the ‘not really producing much yet’ phase (although we were actually able to use two lemons from our trees that had actually turned yellow and were ready for the pickin’! I cannot wait until these trees produce in large quantities!). Fortunately, however, we have some good friends with a mature lemon tree that produces lemons like crazy and they were kind enough to share some with us. (Thanks Browns!) 🙂

So the process starts with picking the lemons, but since that was already done for us, we moved right on to the juicing phase. Cut the lemons in half and then juice, juice, juice those babies until they have no more juice left in them. (Note: an electric juicer is TONS of help when doing any substantial amount of juicing, although not necessary as you can read about below.)

Add child labor whenever possible.

Pour the collected juice into a jar…

and ta-da! You’ve got freshly squeezed lemon juice that is just BEGGING to be made into lemonade. 😀 (P.S. Just refrigerate or freeze any lemon juice that will not be used right away.)

Fresh Homemade Lemonade

Download Printable Version
Ingredients:

  • 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • approximately 2 quarts of water

Directions:

  1. In a 2-quart pitcher, add your lemon juice and sugar.
  2. Add enough water and ice to make 2 quarts. Stir. Enjoy.

{Note: These amounts are based on personal preference. If you like your lemonade a bit more tangy, use more lemon juice. If you like it more diluted, use less. More sweet, more sugar… you get the idea. This is just a starting point. Also note that different types of lemons (or different levels of maturity) will produce different flavors. So depending on the type/maturity of lemon you’re using, you may end up varying your amounts as well.}

So here’s my funny lemon juicing story… just to keep life real: We have an electric juicer (as you can see from the pictures above), and I put it together to go ahead and use to juice all these lemons. I tried to juice the first lemon and it wouldn’t work. No motor noise, nothing. I’d only used it a few times before and couldn’t believe it was already broken! ‘Piece of junk’ I’m thinking to myself. So my girls and I juice all our lemons by hand. I disassemble the juicer, and then I remember we’ve got two lemons on our tree, so I run out to grab those to add to our spoils. I come back in and put the juicer back together, and this time I notice a little notch in the top that looks like it’s maybe supposed to line up with the seed catcher part. Hmmm… so I line them up, and badda-boom badda-bing, it works! I couldn’t believe we juiced all those lemons by hand due to my user error. (I seem to be pretty good at making extra work for myself based on user error.) DOH! Well, it was a good arm workout anyway. 😀

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3 thoughts on “From The Garden: Home-Squeezed Lemonade!

  1. Yclept Nemo says:

    I stored my lemonade in a metal bowl (stainless steel), refrigerated, yet the taste changed after several hours. A fresh batch tasted much better. Maybe the lemonade reacted with the air? How do you store yours?

    Just temporary storage till I could mix in my homemade advocaat for snowballs.

    Like

    • Debbie says:

      I would definitely think the metal could react with the acid in the lemon. I always use glass to store mine. Even for temporary storage, I would do glass or plastic.

      Like

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