Old-fashioned Rosemary Lemonade
1 ½ cup water
1 ½ cup sugar
1 ½ cup lemon juice (equal parts of water, sugar, and lemon juice)
Two sprigs of rosemary
optional-grated rind of one lemon
To make the old-fashioned lemonade, combine the water and sugar in a saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. Boil the liquid for three minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and rosemary. Refrigerate at least one hour or until very cold. To serve, fill your glass about 1/3 full with the lemon syrup and add water, iced and sliced lemon.
A faster way is to simply make lemonade is with your favorite mix, add Rosemary and refrigerate. Try adding chopped mint leaves to a strawberry smoothie, or chopped cilantro to tomato juice for something different. Herbs also make great garnishes!
You may have a kitchen shelf dedicated to dried herbs, but we are entering a great time of year to use fresh herbs. The general rule is you should use 3x the amount of fresh herb for a dried herb. For example, if a recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of dried basil, you would use three t or 1 Tablespoon of fresh basil.
If you grow your own herbs, it is ideal to pick those in the morning after the dew had dried but before the sun gets hot. This helps ensure the best flavor and storage.
To store fresh herbs, you should use either an open or a perforated plastic bag and keep in the refrigerator crisper. If you find that you will be unable to use all the fresh herbs that you have, then you may dry or freeze fresh herbs. One really quick and convenient way to do this is to use your microwave! Simply wash and pat dry the herbs, layer on a paper towels, and then microwave. The time will vary depending on the power of your particular microwave. But, in general herbs will dry from 30 seconds to 1 minute. Your microwave manual may have instructions. If it doesn't, then start with a low amount of time and then increase as needed. If you leave the herbs in the microwave too long, they will burn! Herbs can also be frozen to preserve. These herbs are perfect for using in cooked foods.
Regardless of how you preserve the herbs, remember to label the item with the type of herb and the date.