I used to buy frozen lemonade concentrate and still sometimes do, especially when we’re having guests and I want to serve something besides soda. It’s usually pretty tasty and relatively inexpensive. But there’s something about homemade lemonade that speaks of the obvious: summertime. When my kids see me with a pile of lemons and my juicer, they get as excited as if I were making their favorite cookies.

Which is exactly what happened today. I found myself with lemons in abundance and since we are getting ready to have a bbq with my parents, I thought it might be a nice treat for everyone if I made some homemade lemonade. Homemade lemonade, homemade lemonade…it has a nice ring to it.

Anyway, on with my favorite way to make it. This recipe comes from Paula Deen so you have to know there is a lot of sugar. I about fell over when I first saw how much sugar this calls for. Trust me…we’re working with fresh lemons. We need a lot of sugar. I haven’t deviated from Paula’s instructions – this lemonade renders the perfect balance between sweet and tart, and is utterly refreshing and delicious!

2 cups of sugar (*gasp!)
1 cup hot water
2 cups fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 gallon cold water
1 lemon, sliced
Mint sprigs, for garnish

Dissolve the sugar in the hot water to make a simple syrup. In a 1 gallon container, add the simple syrup, lemon juice and enough cold water to fill the container. Stir until well mixed. Pour lemonade over glasses of ice, squeeze a slice of lemon on top of each, and garnish with a sprig of mint. Enjoy!