Grilled Lemonade. My first experience with grilled lemons came at a restaurant who served them with the veggie skewers I had ordered. Oh. My. Gosh. The FLAVOR was amazing! So much bolder than raw lemons. A little smokey, soooo much juicier. I was sold.
With summer upon us, I thought about making this grilled lemonade. You can see the depth of color you get simply from grilling them for a few minutes.
It all begins with halving the lemons. We used a grill pan to show you that this could be done indoors. You could also use an outdoor grill (and if you are grilling anything else, including veggies….I urge you to throw a few lemons on and serve alongside. You won’t regret it!) If you grill indoors or on a pan, you get the added benefit of catching all of those caramelized lemon drippings. Add them right to your lemonade. We’ll strain things later on…
Anyway, you can ever so lightly wipe the pan with vegetable oil to assure they won’t stick. Nothing worse. Before you place the lemons down, sprinkle the cut sides with a very small amount of sugar. This helps them get that caramelized color and sweetens things up a bit.
Here’s what they look like straight off the grill pan. A really vibrant yellow. Allow to cool slightly and juice while still warm. You know how you hear professional chefs on t.v. tell you to microwave the lemons prior to juicing? This is the same idea. It releases the juice much easier from the fruit.
We also took one lemon and sliced it pretty thick and grilled it on both sides to add to the pitcher as a garnish. They also can be used on the serving glasses themselves.
While the lemons are cooling, we made a simple syrup of sugar and water and added that to the strained lemon juice along with 4 Cups of Water and some Ice.
- FOR THE SIMPLE SYRUP:
- 1 C Sugar
- 1 C Water
- FOR THE LEMONADE:
- 3 very large or 6 medium Lemons halved, grilled then juiced
- 1 Tbl Sugar for sprinkling the lemons
- 4 C Cold Water plus Ice Cubes
For the simple syrup, combine 1 Cup Sugar and 1 Cup Water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Boil for 5 minutes until sugar is dissolved. Cool completely.
Preheat a grill pan or grill until very hot. Oil lightly to prevent any sticking.
Halve the lemons and sprinkle the cut sides with a small amount of sugar. Place cut side down on the grill pan and cook for 2-3 minutes and remove to a plate until cool enough to handle. Squeeze the juice from them while still warm into a strainer over a measuring cup. You'll need 1 full of Cup of lemon juice.
Also, make thick slices from another lemon (or two) and sprinkle both sides with sugar. Grill until marks appear, repeat on the other side. Set aside for garnish.
Add the lemon juice to a pitcher. Follow with the simple syrup, 4 Cups of Water and Ice Cubes.
Makes six 8 oz. servings.