A friend and her 2 children came for a visit yesterday afternoon.
I'm at home, by myself during the days, Monday through Friday. I have a few occasions to go out and visit with people, or attend Bible studies. But most of the week, I spend on my own, keeping those home fires, if not burning, at least smoldering. It's such a lovely diversion from work, to be able to sit and catch up with a friend, for a couple of hours.
Needing refreshments that could be kid-worthy, as well as would suit us adults, I turned to my pantry, garden and freezer.
From the freezer, I dug out some lemon bars, leftover from baking last week. From the garden I found about a teacup's worth of ripe raspberries. And in the pantry, I had dried cranberries and about a half a peck of raw sunflower seeds.
I toasted some of the sunflower seeds and mixed them with dried cranberries, for a quick trail mix.
For an easy-to-make beverage with a bit more "wow" than ordinary lemonade, I made raspberry lemonade.
This is what I used:
scant 1 cup raspberries, rinsed (this is a good use for the motley-looking, close to overripe berries)
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup bottled lemon juice
chilled water to total 1 quart of liquid
I used my stick blender to puree the raspberries. But a potato masher, or back of a serving spoon would also work.
I scooped the raspberry puree into a mesh strainer set over the opening of the pitcher.
With a rubber spatula, I pressed the puree through the strainer.
To the strained raspberry puree, I added the lemon, juice, sugar and water to the 1 quart line on the pitcher, and stirred until the sugar was dissolved.
The verdict on the raspberry lemonade was not only that it was delicious, but you "could really taste the raspberry flavor - yum" -- and that came from my friend's children.
For a little less than 2 quarts, you can buy the Simply Lemonade brand of raspberry lemonade for about $2, at places like Wal-Mart. My homemade version, cost about 15 cents for the lemon juice and sugar to make 1 quart, and the raspberries were basically free, putting my cost at 30 cents for 2 quarts. I just throw all that mathy-math stuff in, cuz I think we like to show ourselves just how much money we're saving -- not that I would really buy prepared raspberry lemonade ;-)