Here in Somerset, we’ve been enjoying some real scorchers in recent weeks, which has been perfect for the start of the school holidays. Your entries for July’s Family Foodies challenge have proven simply perfect inspiration for deliciously refreshing ways to chill out in this sticky heat.
This afternoon the girls and I made our own lemonade after school, as I happened to have some extra lemons that needed using up.
Yes I know it’s December, but lemonade doesn’t have to be the preserve of hot summer days.
I actually think all that vitamin C makes it a very sensible winter drink.
You don’t need much and it couldn’t be easier to make, especially if you’ve got children around who love to squeeze the lemons for you.
750 ml hot boiled water
100g caster sugar
Peel the zest from all the lemons in wide strips and put in a heatproof jug with the caster sugar.
Pour in the hot water and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
Add lots of ice and then the juice of the four lemons.
Strain into a separate jug to remove the pips and zest and when fully cooled serve over ice. Lovely served with some chopped mint.
It was the Christmas Fair today at my daughter’s primary school and as a devoted PTA committee member I was tasked with organising a non-alcoholic version of mulled wine to serve with mince pies.
This was a bit of a tall order as for me the whole point of a mulled drink is that it’s warming and boozy. But eventually I came up with this little number and you know what, it’s really rather good. It turns out you can have a Christmas drink that’s warming and non-boozy after all. Which is probably a good idea when you’re in charge of hundreds of children under the age of eleven.
Non-alcoholic mulled fruit punch
3 litres apple juice
3 litres cranberry juice
3 oranges, sliced
4 cinnamon sticks
5cm ginger, peel and chopped
Handful of cloves
Handful of star anise
This couldn’t be simpler. Into a large pan, pour in the apple juice and cranberry juice. Add the orange slices and spices and bring to simmering point. Keep just under boiling for about ten minutes before serving. People will come running when they smell those spices that just sing out “It’s Christmas!!!”