Happy Sunday!! You know what tomorrow is? Monday! Why the exclamation? Because it’s Labor Day and you’re off work! Woo hoo! It also happens to be day 4 of our vodka party. Have you been following along? If not, here’s the recap
Now that you’re up to speed, or even better have been hanging out every day with us. Let’s talk about today’s drink! It’s a pretty simple vodka and lemonade. Classic right? But, this lemonade is far from ordinary.
So this “recipe” is really easy, and honestly, not really a recipe at all, so I’ll just walk you through it. There are four components- timing, ingredients, quantities, and process. Easy enough right? Great! Let’s talk
This recipe really works best if you can let it marinate (? for lack of a better term, we’ll go with marinate? Infuse?) overnight. It’s Sunday. This recipe will be perfect tomorrow for labor day. But, having a party today? No biggie, you can get away with just 2-4 hours, if you pick your ingredients right. So moving right along
First you need lemonade. Ta da! Didn’t see that coming by the title of this post did you? I found a couple of great low cal options for you. I know it seems like I’m on a minute maid kick, and no these posts are not being sponsored by them, they’re just doing some great stuff with low cal juices. Which up until recently, have been almost impossible to find. Trader Joe’s, obviously you know my love for Trader Joe’s, also has a fantastic low calorie lemonade. It’s a bit higher with 40 calories, but definitely more natural, so you could decide if the extra calories are worth it to you. For this posts calorie content, I went with the minute maid, because I also bought a bunch for yesterday’s post as well! Regular or pink lemonade work great!
Ok, so once you have the lemonade, you need the add ins. First, if this is going to marinate overnight, your possibilities are endless. However, if you’re just going to let sit for a couple of hours, longer is still always best, but 2-4 will work at minimum. I’m going to put a star next to the fruits that will work in a short period of time.
- If you only have time for a short soak, what you’re looking for here is very juicy fruits. Fruits like pineapple and watermelon. Fresh berries don’t work great, but frozen do because they’ve been broken down a bit. Or fruits that are very ripe? Perhaps have been sitting in that drawer a touch long?
- If you’re going to let this marinate overnight, put it in the fridge, if not, keep it at room temperature so the fruit infuses better.
- Fruit should be slice or chopped into chunks, smaller chunks, equals more surface area equals more flavor. But don’t go crazy here.
Fruits- any? all?? My favorites are
Orange or Blood Orange*
Peaches and nectarines- if they’re firm, they need overnight, if they’re really ripe or frozen, you’re good in a short period of time.
Mango- same as peaches
Cherries*- need to be cut in half, skin is too protective
Jalapeno- easy here, remove seeds and add a slice or two, you can always add more.
The general rule is about a 1/4 of the pitcher or glass should be fruit. If you’re doing a pitcher, 2-3 individual fruits like peaches, apples, mangoes. For the small fruits like cherries or berries, or chunks of pineapple or watermelon, 2 good handfuls work. Obviously though, the more fruit, the more flavor. So the less time you have, the more fruit you should add.
For the alcohol. You want 1 ounce to every 8 ounces of juice. So if you have 59 ounces of juice, like one of those minute maid bottles. You need about 7 1/2 to 8 ounces of vodka. 8oz is one cup, if that helps your measuring.
For a full strength drink, you’ll get about 6 portions from the above concoction, with just over an ounce of vodka and 10 ounces of juice in each cocktail. At this quantity, your cocktail would be 103 calories each.
Add ingredients to a pitcher or drink dispenser. If you want just an individual portion, a glass or mason jar work great.
Now before I serve, I either remove the chunks of fruit or strain the lemonade, depending on what fruit you used, pulp and seeds can be released. I’m not a pulp fan, so it gets strained. The fruit after a good soak, really gives up its flavor, so you want to remove the fruit so no one eats it. It wouldn’t be bad for you to eat, just not very yummy. if your fruit has seeds you definitely need to strain. Let’s not have people choking or breaking a tooth on an unexpected seed or pit!
When I’m preparing the fruit, I retain a couple of nice pretty slices and add it back in to the pitcher for more infusing flavor, but really just the look of it, beautiful chunks of fresh fruit in your cocktail, it just looks gorgeous.
Here’s a quick recap
- Mix a low calorie lemonade with fruit.
- Let marinate as long as possible
- Strain fruit, add vodka (1 cup to 1 bottle of juice) and a few fresh slices of your fruit
- Drink responsibly! Preferably by a pool