My rosemary plant is growing beautifully (unlike my basil, which is bolting, and cilantro, which I’ve killed twice now) and I’ve been trying to come up with ways to use it. A while back I tried baking some lemon rosemary cookies, and while they were delicious they tasted mostly like butter and rosemary and not so much like lemon. Intrigued by the lemon/rosemary juxtaposition, though, I tried combining them in a lemonade recipe this weekend. I tweaked several different recipes I found online so as to also incorporate the agave that’s been sitting in my pantry since last summer.
I started by bringing six cups of water to a boil, then I removed it from the heat, added two sprigs of rosemary, and left it to steep, covered, until it cooled to room temperature.
I was surprised by how intensely the rosemary infused the water! It looked almost like tea when I removed the sprigs and poured it into a pitcher.
Meanwhile, I measured out a half cup of agave nectar. Agave is kind of like honey except it comes from a plant. If you don’t have any you can use honey or simple syrup instead.
The bag of seven small lemons I’d purchased yielded only around 3/4 cup of juice, so I made up the difference with some bottled lemon juice from the fridge and stirred in the agave.
Then I combined the lemon-agave mixture with the rosemary-infused water, plus two additional cups of cold water.
Of course I drank mine in a mason jar garnished with rosemary. So fancy.
When the pitcher was about half empty I made some iced tea to mix in with it–the result was delicious! In fact, I think next time I’ll add a tea bag in with the rosemary to steep right from the get go.
This was an interesting take on lemonade–it’s much less sweet than what I’m used to and the rosemary added such an interesting flavor. It was a little disconcerting, to be honest, but combined with the iced tea it was a delight. It would probably be really good as a cocktail, too, but I was fresh out of tequila. Verdict: I probably wouldn’t serve it as straight up lemonade because it doesn’t actually taste like lemonade, but it would be a great base for an Arnold Palmer or an original cocktail.