chamomile lemonade

have you ever come across fresh chamomile at the farmers’ market?  i love loose chamomile tea but the fresh stuff is even better, just like how fresh mint tea is so much better than the dried version.

i found bunches of fresh chamomile at a stand in the hollywood farmers’ market, but with this warm weather i don’t feel like brewing hot tea.  and since i’ve been obsessed with different flavors of lemonade, i instantly thought to pair the light tart flavor of lemonade with the flowery chamomile flavor.  it’s delightfully light and refreshing, a perfect beverage for the upcoming hot summer days.

try mixing 50/50 with black iced tea for an arnold palmer, or about 1 part lemonade with 2 parts light beer for the perfect summer shandy.


chamomile lemonade
1 bunch chamomile (around 2 oz or 1/8th lb)
1 c fresh lemon juice
1/2 c honey
4 c water

put the 4 cups of water to boil in a tea kettle on the stove.  meanwhile, rinse off any dirt from your chamomile but be careful not to let too many of the flowers fall apart. trim the very bottoms and discard, but leave most of the stems on.  place the chamomile in a large bowl and when the water boils pour it gently over.  let steep for about 10-15 minutes.

in a separate bowl or measuring cup strain any pulp or seeds out of the lemon juice and mix with the honey.  the acidity of the lemon juice should dissolve all of the sugar in the honey.

when the tea is done steeping, pull out the large pieces of chamomile with tongs and strain the liquid to get all the little bits of flower out.  mix with the lemon honey mixture and refrigerate for at least a few hours if you want it to be cold to serve.  otherwise pour over ice.

yields 3-5 servings


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