Peanut Butter Chocolate Almond Milk Ice Cream

So I mentioned recently that I fell in love with an easy chocolate banana almond milk ice cream recipe. I love it, because I love all things ice cream and things that include frozen bananas. Yum! My husband does not share the same affinity for bananas in dessert, but he loves ice cream. So I needed to find an almond milk treat that could satisfy both of us. The only complaint I have with my newest concoction is that it wasn’t nearly enough to satiate us ice cream monsters. So I would recommend doubling or even tripling (or get crazier with it!) the recipe.

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Almond Milk Ice Cream
inspired by Denise Santoro Lincoln’s almond milk ice cream recipes

Ingredients:
1/3 cup chocolate chips
1 teaspoon canola oil
1 1/2 cups almond milk
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup peanut butter

Instructions:
. Place chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, gradually heating and stirring until melted. Add canola oil and stir to incorporate. Place mixture into a Ziploc bag and set aside.

n a microwave-safe bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup almond milk with cocoa powder and sugar. Microwave for 40 seconds and then stir. Place mixed milk along with the remaining cup of almond milk in a blender with the vanilla and peanut butter. Blend until fully incorporated

Place mixture into an ice cream mixer and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. A few minutes before the ice cream is completely churned, snip the corner of the Ziploc bag containing the melted chocolate. While the ice cream mixer is still running, drizzle the chocolate into the ice cream. Let the ice cream to continue to churn for 5 minutes.

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Mediterranean Chicken Bowl

What a chilly week has been! I know that a cold week in Georgia is much balmier than other places, but I definitely have had my share of layers upon layers of blankets and warm drinks in my hands! Despite the chilly weather, I have been able to make us some terrific tasty and healthy meals in my resolution to eat better and get fit. I’ve even added a workout regimen that requires me to get up an hour earlier than usual on workdays. And as my husband can attest, I am NOT a morning person, so this is a huge accomplishment!

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You may have remembered from last week’s post that I have finally tried quinoa and really enjoy it. So I had been wanting to incorporate it more into our meals. I also had been craving a Mediterranean salad after having the quinoa mixed with dill, cucumbers, and feta. Out of these two lovely things came a meal that I think I could have multiple times a week. It’s filling and light at the same time, and I’m obsessed with the briny and fresh elements of it all!

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Mediterranean Chicken Bowl

Ingredients:
1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup water
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
5 chicken tenderloins, cut into 1″ cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 onion, chopped
1/2 cucumber, diced
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, cut in half
15 pitted kalamata olives, plus 1 tablespoon of the liquid from the jar
10 green manzanilla olives
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

Instructions:
Prepare 1/2 cup of quinoa in boiling water as directed on package. (Note: Most packages will instruct you to rinse the quinoa before cooking.)

After cubing the chicken tenderloin, sprinkle black pepper over cubes. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic, and stir around for 1-2 minutes. Add chicken cubes and chopped onion. Add 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar and stir around the skillet, cooking until the chicken is done and the onions begin to appear more translucent (10-15 minutes). Remove from heat.

In a small bowl, combine cucumber, tomatoes, and both types of olives with the tablespoon of liquid from the kalamata olive jar. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, stirring to mix oil and vinegar evenly throughout. Stir in feta cheese.

Split the quinoa evenly between two bowls, followed by the chicken and onions. Top the bowls with the Mediterranean salad mixture and enjoy!

Serves 2

Bacon Apple Cheddar Quiche

I love a good quiche, and it’s a great thing to add to your pre-turkey breakfast. A lot of times my family has a heavy brunch that holds us over until our late afternoon Thanksgiving dinner. Quiches are pretty filling and are a great option for this meal!

You may remember a few months ago I posted this spinach ham and cheese quiche as I christened my new quiche/tart pan. This is a very tasty option!

Recently, I was craving quiche again and wanted to incorporate an autumn-esque touch. I decided to use apples, and have always loved eating apples alongside cheddar cheese. Bacon seemed like a delightfully salty contrast to the sweetness of the apple, creating a very savory flavor. And the combo delivered!

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When I made my first quiche, I mentioned that it was optional to cover your quiche. In this recipe, I found that covering the quiche was more important because it browned more than I would have liked it to. Let me know what you think, and happy eating!

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Bacon Apple Cheddar Quiche

Ingredients:
8-10 slices bacon
1 medium onion, diced
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and diced
1 refrigerated pie crust
6 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 teaspoon Herbes de Provence sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a deep skillet, fry the bacon over medium heat. Let the bacon cool and then chop. Remove the bacon fat from the skillet and cook the onions in the same pan for about 6-8 minutes. Add in the diced apples and cook for about 2 more minutes, until the onions are translucent. Remove from heat.

Roll out refrigerated pie crust and press gently into a quiche/tart pan. Place pan on a baking sheet for stability.

In a large bowl, beat eggs. Stir in heavy cream, mixing thoroughly. Add cheddar cheese, Herbes de Provence, and pepper, stirring until throughly mixed. Add cooked onion, apples, and bacon, stirring well. Pour mixture into quiche pan. Cover loosely with foil to prevent the quiche from getting too dark. Place pan in oven and let cook for 1 hour until set.

Butternut Squash Ravioli

I’m so excited to share this with you that there’s a high chance of me being a bit spastic. So I apologize….sort of.

Because it’s worth it!

Last month, I made a point to make it to the last Dahlonega’s Farmers Market of the year. I came home with some of the biggest zucchinis I have ever seen, hot pepper jelly (if you are dipping your crackers into cream cheese topped with this stuff, you’re missing out and need to check this combo out ASAP!), and a beautiful butternut squash.

Not long afterwards, the zucchini and hot pepper jelly were both devoured. My butternut squash waiting patiently in the pantry for me to determine what to do with it. In years past, I have whipped up smooth and creamy soups or this awesomely savory mix of the squash with caramelized onions, crispy sage leaves, and gorgonzola (check that out on Closet Cooking here!). But neither seemed appropriate for this squash.

And then I got to thinking, and I became hooked by the idea of ravioli. And I couldn’t get it off of my mind. So the butternut squash continued to wait patiently as I looked up various recipes and tried to find a good chunk of time to devote to this endeavor.

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Some things you should know upfront:
1. This is a delicious meal. Let that be your hook – it’s like eating dessert for dinner! Not to mention you aren’t paying anywhere close to $18 a plate at a gourmet Italian restaurant.
2. That being said, this is a time-consuming recipe. I split it up into 2 parts. On Monday night after preparing dinner, I prepared the dough and filling and assembled my raviolis. I popped them in the freezer and cooked them last night, complete with their buttery sage sauce. It’s definitely a process, but never have I ever felt so rewarded by a recipe like this!
3. You do NOT need a pasta machine or attachment for this recipe. If you had one it would save you time, but it is very doable without one so don’t be alarmed!

The recipe I ended up doing was a combination of two blog posts I found. I used Good Food Stories‘ pasta recipe and butternut squash roasting method. For the filling, finishing sauce, and freezing/cooking instructions, I used the recipe from 100 Days of Real Food.

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Butternut Squash Ravioli
Makes 16-35 pieces, depending on how thinly you roll the dough

Ingredients:
for the pasta:
2 heaping cups all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
for the filling:
1 butternut squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup
4 oz cream cheese, softened (I used neufchâtel)
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
for the sauce:
5 tablespoons butter
a handful of sage leaves (or 1-2 tablespoons rubbed sage)
black pepper to taste

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Peel butternut squash, slice in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Cut the squash into 1 inch cubes. Place cubes in a medium mixing bowl with 2 tablespoons olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Toss the squash until well coated and then spread the cubes over the parchment paper. Bake until soft and tender, about 30 minutes.

In a large bowl, pour in flour, creating a well in the middle. Place eggs, oil, and salt into the well and, slowly and gently, begin stirring around the eggs with your fingertips until a roughly shaped dough ball forms. Dump onto a dusted countertop and knead for 5 minutes or so until you can make a smooth dough ball. Cover with bowl and let dough rest for 15 minutes.

In a medium bowl, combine butternut squash with the remaining filling ingredients. Stir and mash the mixture until ingredients are well incorporated.

On a countertop dusted with flower, cut the ball of dough in half, re-covering one half of the dough. Roll out the other half until pasta is at least down to a thickness of 1/8″ (If you can get it down to 1/16″ and it isn’t starting to tear, you’ll have more raviolis to go around!). Pull dough gently with your hands and shape it into a long rectangular piece. Uncover the remaining dough and repeat the process, making a rectangle the same size as the original pasta sheet.

Using a tablespoon, measure out dollops of the filling and place on the first pasta sheet, leaving about an inch between each scoop. Use a pastry brush to lightly brush water around the scoops of filling on the pasta. Then cover the pasta and filling with the remaining pasta sheet. Gently press the pasta down, making sure to seal all edges and the area surrounding each scoop of filling. Slice the pasta into squares with a pastry cutter. Crimp the edges of each square of ravioli with a fork and place on a sheet of wax paper, making sure the individual pieces do not touch.

If you are freezing your pasta for another day, stop here. Place raviolis either in a large Tupperware container or in a large freezer bag. Make sure that the raviolis do not touch each other, and have layers of wax paper in between the pasta. When you decide to cook the pasta, add 1 minute to the cook time. The ravioli can be thrown in the water without defrosting.

Fill a stockpot 3/4 full with water and add some salt. Place pot on the stovetop and heat until boiling. Add a splash of olive oil (to prevent pasta from sticking to each other) and pour the ravioli into the pot. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. When the ravioli rises to the surface, they are cooked. Remove from heat and gently pour pasta into a colander.

In a small saucepan, cook the butter over medium-hight heat. After all of the butter has melted, add in the sage and black pepper. Just as the butter starts to brown, pull it off of the heat. Serve over cooked ravioli.

Adapted from Good Food Stories and 100 Days of Real Food.

Sweet Bruschetta Chicken

If you have joined in on my blogging adventure, you probably already know how much I adore caprese and bruschetta related things! So much so that when I came across the Pioneer Woman’s recipe for bruschetta chicken, I asked our wedding caterer to prepare a dish inspired by it! It was delicious, and ever since then it has been one of my favorite ways to prepare grilled chicken.

In doing various modifications and improving that fit my various moods while cooking, I was reminded of a delightful little restaurant in Watkinsville, Georgia. For those of you who have know earthly idea where I’m talking about, Watkinsville is a small town just outside of Athens, Georgia. My roommates and I used to go out to eat there at a delightful Mexican-Italian fusion restaurant – Girasoles. When you arrived, they would bring out some crisp baguette slices and a sweet balsamic dipping sauce that was out of this world. This played into my most recent interpretation of bruschetta chicken.

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As I mentioned recently, I had a bit of a dilemma with my cherry tomato plant. It was growing splendidly, and I had a chance to harvest a handful of these tasty little jewels. The issue arose when we moved into an apartment without a back portch. No longer do we have the luxury to have oodles of potted plants. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE our new place, but sadly our cherry tomato friend could not join us in our move. So I went ahead and took some green cherry tomatoes with me as I said goodbye to my dear plants.

It turns out that green tomatoes are a great texture addition to meals, this one included. So if you started late in your tomato crop and are still waiting for a few to ripen before the chilly weather really sets in, never fear! You can still use them!

Anyways, enjoy!

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Sweet Bruschetta Chicken

Ingredients:

for the chicken…
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons rosemary garlic (I used a spice I have at home that is dried minced garlic with rosemary, but you could easily substitute 2 cloves minced garlic and 1 tbl rosemary)
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips

for the caprese topping…
8-10 cherry tomatoes, sliced
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Herbes de Provence sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions:
Mix together sugar, vinegar, olive oil, and rosemary garlic. Place chicken strips in a large Ziploc bag and pour balsamic mixture over the chicken. Seal and refrigerate for 20-25 minutes.
Combine ingredients for caprese topping and let rest.
Grill chicken and top with caprese.

Scrambled Breakfast Sandwiches

It’s another one of those unconventional Mondays. Fun fact: we moved this weekend! Not so fun fact: we spent the week eating frozen dinners in order to pack up a lot of our stuff. Nevertheless an exciting fact: I have a delicious new recipe for you! Enjoy!

Oh the joys of Netflix! The Mr. and I decided that we would just get an internet plan last year and hold off on cable. And through our bountiful and ever-growing collection of movies and a sweet and simple Netflix subscription, we have been set. The internet is a beautiful thing.

Recently, we started watching Kitchen Nightmares with Chef Gordon Ramsay on Netflix. To simplify things, we quickly mutually developed a chef crush. The man is a genius! And our infatuation with his finesse and culinary excellence brought us to find more things we could watch by him. Brandon found a few clips online of Chef Ramsay demonstrating how to cook basic dishes or items. One particularly revolutionary video for us involved him explaining how to make the perfect scrambled eggs.

Life. Changing.

You see, the idea of brinner, or breakfast for dinner, brings a great amount of joy to my husband. In other words, last time I asked him how he felt about me making brinner, he told me I never had to ask that question again. Get the picture? It’s a place of reverence.

But back to Chef Ramsay’s eggs.

First of all, I had always used a skillet rather than a saucepan. Even more profoundly, I had never heard of taking the eggs on and off the heat as you constantly whisk them with a rubber spatula. And he explains over and over how steps such as beating the eggs or seasoning them before cooking can break down the egg and not give you the best tastes and textures. So of course when I saw how delightfully fluffy his final product was, I was dying to try it. If you have not yet clicked on the link to this video, do it now! It is worth your time . . . in gold!

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It also worked out nicely that a cherry tomato plant I had been working hard on this summer was starting to produce some ripe and juicy little treasures. So with my new and fresh understandings of the proper way to scramble eggs and my miniature sized harvest, this beautiful brinner emerged. Enjoy!

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Scrambled Breakfast Sandwiches

Serves 4

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 cup diced onion
3/4 cup diced bell peppers (I used red and orange)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 large eggs
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
8 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
4 English muffins

Instructions:
In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add diced onion and peppers, stirring occasionally. Cook until onions begin to appear translucent, about 10-15 minutes.

In the meantime, place a small saucepan on the stove over medium heat. Add eggs and butter and begin stirring in large strokes with a rubber spatula. As the egg mixture begins to thicken, remove the saucepan from the heat and continue to stir the eggs with the spatula. After about 15-20 seconds, bring the eggs back to the heat, continuing to stir. Repeat this process 2-3 times or until the eggs are almost fully cooked and still moist, and take them off of heat completely. (At this point, Chef Ramsay adds a tablespoon of creme fraiche in order to keep the eggs from overcooking. I didn’t have any available, so follow your heart . . . or your stomach!) Add salt and pepper and stir in onions, peppers, and both cheeses.

In a toaster or toaster oven, toast the English muffins to desired crispness. On each opened English muffin, place a fourth of the scrambled eggs and top with the cherry tomatoes. Place the top of the English muffin on for a breakfast sandwich!

Spinach, Ham, & Cheese Quiche

I hope everyone had a great Labor Day weekend! Having Monday off put my schedule out of wack and wow, it’s already Wednesday and you haven’t heard from me in a while! But here we are, and I have a new recipe for you!

This is another Williams Sonoma inspiration. I’m telling you, these sales get me every time! This weekend, I came home with a fruit muddler, some delicious herbes de Provence sea salt, and a quiche/tart pan. That night we had brinner (breakfast for dinner), and it was extremely tasty!

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I used this Real Simple frittata recipe and the Pioneer Woman’s quiche recipe to create this yummy quiche! And I got to incorporate the herbes de Provence sea salt as well, which adds some phenomenal flavors. And the quiche pan makes a gorgeous crust that cleanly pops out of the pan.

For our brinner, I paired the quiche with some strawberries tossed in sugar with fresh mint and thyme…

We devoured this meal. And no, we did not have guests over. It was just that good!

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Spinach, Ham, & Cheese Quiche

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons butter
4 oz deli ham, thinly sliced and cut into 1″ squares
1 medium onion, diced
1 refrigerated pie crust
7 eggs
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 teaspoon herbes de Provence sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups fresh spinach, chopped

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add deli ham and cook for 2-3 minutes, flipping halfway through. Put ham aside, saving the butter in the skillet. Add the diced onions and cook until translucent, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Roll out refrigerated pie crust and press gently into quiche/tart pan. (I placed my quiche pan on a baking sheet for additional stability.)

In a large bowl, beat eggs. Stir in heavy cream, mixing thoroughly. Add cheddar cheese, herbes de Provence sea salt, and pepper, stirring until thoroughly mixed. Add cooked onion and ham and chopped spinach, stirring well. Pour mixture into quiche pan.

Place pan into the oven and bake for 1 hour until set. (In her quiche recipe, the Pioneer Woman suggests covering the quiche loosely with foil to prevent it from getting too dark. I did not use foil, but depending on your preferences or oven tendencies, feel free to incorporate this!)

Spanakopita Triangles

So one danger in living so close to the Dawsonville outlet malls is my proximity to the Williams Sonoma Outlet. Granted, I’m usually looking for sale items, but still, it’s a tempting place! Last month they were having a pretty big clearance sale and I came home with these lovely finds:

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I was intrigued by Williams Sonoma’s idea for spanakopita pastries. No, it’s not a dish that’s been in the family or something I have always had on special occasions. It just looked delicious! The combination of spinach, feta, and Parmesan practically had me drooling on the box as I went home.

True confessions: I didn’t actually use the press in this recipe. But it inspired me, so that’s got to count for something!

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Spanakopita is a Greek spinach dish, and can be served as a pie or as triangle pastries. It is typically made with phyllo dough that is stuffed with spinach, feta, scallions, and egg, with some tasty seasonings. And I must say, the picture on that pasty press box accurately sold how scrumptious these delights are – I’m in love! For my take on this recipe, I substituted scallions with diced onions, and I threw in a clove of minced garlic as well because it’s one of my favorite things to combine with spinach.

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I’ve mentioned to you before how delicate phyllo dough is, and how important it is to cover the sheets with a paper towel in between creating your layers. I also learned a few new things about phyllo in this recipe. Previously in our phyllo pizzas, I had sprayed cooking spray between layers. This time, I used melted butter, and quickly realized I was using too much in between layers. When you brush between each layer, brush LIGHTLY! But man oh man using melted butter makes everything so melt-in-your-mouth good. Delicious!

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Spanakopita Triangles

Makes 12 triangles

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
4 cups fresh spinach, chopped and with stems removed
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
20 sheets 9″x14″ phyllo dough
1 stick butter, melted

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a small saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat until warm. Add onion and garlic, stirring occasionally and cooking until translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add chopped spinach, stirring until wilted, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a wire mesh sieve. Use a rubber spatula to press the spinach and squeeze out excess water. In a bowl, mix together the spinach mixture, feta, Parmesan, pepper, salt, and egg.

Unroll out the phyllo dough and cover with a damp towel to keep it from drying out. Place a sheet of parchment paper out to fit a sheet of phyllo dough. Lightly brush the parchment paper with butter and then add one sheet of phyllo. Lightly brush the top of the sheet of phyllo with melted butter, and continue adding phyllo and brushing with butter until you have 10 sheets stacked together. Slice dough into 6 strips (9″x2.3″). Place 1/2 tablespoon of spinach mixture 1/2″ above the end of the pastry. Fold over the end of the pastry to form a triangle, and continue to fill up the pastry in triangles, like a paper football or flag. Continue with remaining 5 strips of phyllo. Cover triangles with a towel and repeat the stacking, brushing, and rolling process with the remaining 10 sheets of phyllo and the remainder of the spinach mixture.

Place a new sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Place triangles on the sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, until crisp and golden brown.

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Hot Caprese Salad

Yesterday was the first day of school, and like my elementary school self, I couldn’t sleep the night before. I know I dozed off a time or two, but it seemed as if I spent my night staring at the clock and going over my first day plans over and over again. So when I got home from a wonderful first day of school, I crashed on the couch after devouring dinner. And then after pulling myself from the couch, I resumed crash position in bed. So I’m sorry to say that I didn’t get a chance to write Monday Munchies. A true testament to my exhaustion.

However, I thought I would make it up to you by sharing a fun little recipe I whipped up last week. I had gotten these beautiful cherry tomatoes from the farmer’s market and needed to use some of them up. So i decided to use them as a side dish to our meal. Now I love, love, LOVE me some caprese dip in all of its chilled goodness, but I wanted a warm tomato side. So I figured, why not make a hot caprese salad?

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The tomatoes don’t really need to be cooked here, just warmed. And I found that you want to add your mozzarella as late in the game as possible so it doesn’t turn into one giant blob of cheese. But it’s quick, simple, and a delicious way to spice up your dinner plate!

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Hot Caprese Salad

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut into thirds or quarters
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon ground fresh black pepper
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons shredded mozzarella

Instructions:
Add olive oil to a small saucepan and heat over medium-low heat until warmed. Add cherry tomatoes, rosemary, and pepper, stirring occasionally until warmed, about 3-4 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and stir, letting cook for 1 minute. Add basil and mozzarella. Remove from heat and stir, letting the mozzarella begin to melt. Serve immediately.

Lime-Basil Limeade

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Happy Monday! I’m changing up the routine a little by bringing you a Captivated by Cooking original today. I simply got too excited about it last night, so here we are.

And we’re talking about limeade. I’ve always preferred limes to lemons, although I do love a good glass of lemonade or an Arnold Palmer! But limes have just the right kind of zing for me. When I lived in Athens, I would frequent this incredible outdoor Cuban restaurant, Cali N Tito’s. They had the most amazing limeade. Seriously though, I’ve never had anything like it.

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As I set out to make my limeade, I remembered a lime-basil simple syrup I had made and stashed in my fridge last month. Lime basil is exactly what it sounds like – it’s a basil variety that smells strongly of limes.  I have a handful of varieties of basil in my container garden, and the lime basil had gotten out of control! With its unique taste, I wasn’t quite sure what to do with all of it. It’s too pronounced to be the showcase variety in a caprese or other typical basil dish. So, I looked up a  lime-basil simple syrup recipe and figured I could incorporate it into a mojito-esque drink later on.

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Anyways, all that back story to say that I realized this simple syrup would be a perfect addition to limeade. The familiar basil taste we all know and love is very subtle in this drink, and all the components of the lime really shine through. And when making a cold drink like limeade, it’s always nice to use simple syrup because it mixes much better than with granulated sugar (my old roommate and best friend Kelsey taught me that one – thanks!). If you are eager to make limeade but don’t have access to lime basil, you can use a simple syrup without any other ingredients. Another recipe I saw incorporated lime zest into the simple syrup, which could be another fun twist for you. Mess around with it! Experiment with how sweet or tangy you like your limeade, and enjoy!

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Lime-Basil Limeade

Ingredients:
5-6 limes (or sub in 1 cup bottled lime juice)
1 cup lime-basil simple syrup
2 quarts cold water

Instructions:
Roll limes back and forth over the counter with the palm of your hand (this allows you to get more juice out of your lime!). Cut limes in half and juice limes until you have 1 cup of fresh lime juice. Pour juice into a pitcher. Add in lime-basil simple syrup and cold water. Stir the limeade well and adjust amount of syrup, water, and/or lime juice as needed. Let chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour.

Serve over ice with a sprig of lime basil and a slice of lime (optional).