Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Honeydew-Lemon Soda

Hello!  I hope everyone had a lovely weekend!  I had a really nice weekend, complete with a layer cake adventure (if you follow me on Instagram, you'll have seen a few pics!) that I will discuss and share with you in much greater detail next week, an awesome brunch, and many laughs with friends who I hadn't seen in a while.  It was a lot of fun, but I'll admit, I was pretty pooped when it was all finished!  Given that, I needed something to prepare myself something nice and refreshing that was also really simple to put together, with the really simple part being the most important.

Now that we're in spring, I've been craving all kinds of seasonal spring flavors more and more, and it's such a bummer that the weather is windy, rainy, and still cold.  I've decided to pretend like the outside weather isn't happening, and fully embrace spring anyway.  I'd been looking forward to making some kind of fruity, refreshing drink, and since I had a pretty hectic weekend, Sunday afternoon was the perfect time to mix up such a drink.  I decided to make a homemade fruit soda, because really, what could be more refreshing than that!?

I wanted to experiment a little when I was making this soda and use flavors that were a bit out of the box.  I just so happened to have an entire honeydew melon in my fridge at the time, so I figured that a honeydew soda was definitely out of the box!  I love sodas that have a hint of citrus, so I knew that I had to incorporate a little lemon flavor in there somehow.  After a little bit of thought, I figured out the formula to mix up a tasty and bubbly homemade soda.  

I based the recipe, if you can call it that, for this soda off of the method I used to make these Fizzy Blackberry Limeades that I made last summer.  It's a super easy formula that involves a flavored simply syrup, fruit, and a good amount of club soda.  I started off by making a homemade lemon simple syrup, which takes all of about 5 minutes to make.  Simple syrups are like secret weapons for your kitchen arsenal.  They take no effort at all to prepare, and can work wonders in so many recipes, from sweetening up a drink to helping keep a cake moist. Simple syrups are called "simple syrups" because they really are simple to make (duh).  All it takes is heating up equal parts water and sugar until the sugar dissolves and the liquid that remains thickens and becomes syrup-like.  To this plain simple syrup, I added a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and some lemon zest, and then placed the lemon simple syrup in the fridge to chill.  The fruit part of the formula comes from the honeydew melon (obvi), which I just blended, strained, and chilled.  Once the syrup and honeydew juice were nice and cold, it was soda assembly time!  All it took was layering a few tablespoons of lemon syrup,  a little honeydew juice, club soda, and a pretty pink straw to make me feel like it was spring!    

This soda takes almost no time or effort to prepare, but there are a few important things to keep in mind when preparing it to ensure that your soda is great. The most important thing to remember is to keep all the soda components as chilled as possible...no one wants a lukewarm soda!  Using fresh lemon juice and zest for the simple syrup is also a must.  Fresh lemon has such a fantastic brightness to it that you just can't capture in a bottle, so make sure to use the real stuff for this.  If honeydew isn't really your cup of tea, you can easily substitute it for your favorite fruit juice.  I thought the honeydew-lemon combination was great, but I'm sure that honeydew-lime would make for a really tasty homemade great soda. This honeydew-lemon soda has a beautiful, bright chartreuse color to it that you definitely don't see very often in drinks, but it's what makes me love this recipe.  The soda just stands out so much!  The measurements I've listed below for the assembly of the soda are approximate, and you can add as little or as much of any of the components to suit your liking.  This lime green soda is bright, bubbly, and refreshing in every way possible.  I love how unique this soda is, and I'm looking forward to making more out-of-the box sodas soon!  Enjoy!

Honeydew-Lemon Soda


For the Lemon Simple Syrup

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest

4 cups honeydew, cubed  (about half a melon)
club soda, chilled


Begin by preparing the lemon simple syrup.  In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water, and heat until the sugar has dissolved and has thickened the water slightly.  Remove from the heat,add the lemon zest, and allow the syrup to cool to room temperature.  Once cool, stir in the fresh lemon juice.  Pass the syrup through a strainer into a small measuring cup, and chill in the fridge until cold.

While the syrup is chilling, blend the honeydew in your blender until smooth.  Strain into a measuring cup (makes around 2 cups of juice), and chill in the fridge until cold.

To prepare the sodas, pour a few tablespoons of the simply syrup into a glass.  Add about 1/2 cup honeydew juice, and then top off with chilled club soda.  Give the soda a quick stir, and enjoy!

Makes about 4 sodas


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