Sunday, June 22, 2014

Summer Roasted Peach Lemonade with Roasted Peach Puree + Honey Simple Syrup

Summer Roasted Peach Lemonade with Roasted Peach Puree +
Honey Simple Syrup
Summer is officially back... and it's back with a bang. It is so damn hot down here in Atlanta, I can barely even step outside before passing out. I'm literally counting down the days until Autumn returns. Until then, it's time to embrace the heat and enjoy signature cocktails, using the grill, and having cookouts with friends and family. And when I think summer days in Georgia, the first thing that comes to all of our minds are peaches. Peaches, peaches, peaches. Peaches on everything. Since they are just coming into season, I bought two bags of them at the farmer's market yesterday. I knew I wanted to make something refreshing, so I ended up deciding to make homemade peach lemonade. I put my own little twist on it by roasting the peaches with honey and turbinado sugar. I absolutely love roasting fruit, it concentrates their sweetness and gives off the most luxurious syrup. After you roast them, let them cool a bit and try to peel off as much of the skin as you can. If you can't get some that's fine because we will end up straining out the big flecks and pieces before serving. Then, all you have to do is puree the roasted peaches until as smooth as possible. I used meyer lemons for my lemonade because I love their sweetness, but any lemon will do to be honest. To sweeten the mix, I made a honey simple syrup. Whenever I make lemonade, I always make honey simple syrup. It enhances the lemon and gives it the most unbelievable balance with just a hint of floral notes. The thing about lemonade is that it is about as Southern as you can get.... uh, besides sweet tea of course. But then you add in roasted peach puree, and well, you've hit the maximum of southern-ness (if you know what I mean). This is great for a picnic, a lemonade stand, or even boozy (hey hey!). We spiked ours with vodka, cointreau, and fresh muddled peaches -- lemme tell you, it was awesome. So go on y'all... make it while the weather is still scorchin' hawt. It will quench your thirst indeed!!
a view from the top 
ready to gulp down...
how cute are these mason jars?!
For the Honey Simple Syrup:
1 ½C Water
1C Honey
¼C Sugar

For the Roasted Peaches:
5-6 Large Peaches, Seed Removed & Split in Half
Honey, For drizzling
Sugar, For Sprinkling

For the Summer Peach Lemonade:
Roasted Peaches, Cooled & Pureed (make sure to remove the skins)
Prepared Honey Simple Syrup, Chilled
2C Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice (I prefer Meyer Lemons, but regular lemons are fine)
4C Cold Water (or more if you want it less strong)

1. For the Honey Simple Syrup: Place the honey, water, and sugar in a medium saucepan and bring it to a boil, and simmer until the honey is completely dissolved. Pour in the syrup into a container and let it cool completely in the refrigerator until chilled, for about an hour.
2. For the Roasted Peaches: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and prepare the peaches by cutting them in half and removing their center seed. Toss the peaches with the honey and place them cut-side down in a roasting pan. Roast in the oven for 15-20 minutes, and then flip them over, sprinkle heavily with sugar, and continue roasting them for another 15-20 minutes. For the last 5 minutes of roasting, turn the oven up to broil and let the fruit flesh caramelize and brown. Remove them from the oven and let them cool completely. After cooling, remove the peach peels and puree them in a food processor until smooth.
3. For the Summer Peach Lemonade: In a large pitcher, combine the peach puree, honey simple syrup, lemon juice, and cold water. Stir to incorporate, and then strain to remove any solids. Chill the peach lemonade overnight or until cold. Enjoy on a hot summer day.

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