It was a super hot weekend a couple of weeks ago, extremely unbearable, actually it was the highest temperature from the entire summer as well! The weather called for fresh homemade lemonade! We have a lemon tree in the backyard that we planted three years ago. It started bearing fruit just about a year ago, and in abundance! This summer has been crazy with the amount of lemons that we have had in the backyard. I must have made lemonade so many times!
Plums are still in season in the Bay Area! Yaya! I love the color of plums, the deep purple hue inside, and then the sweet and tart flavors along with the juiceiness make this fruit super delicious! I made a Plum and Fennel Sparkling Lemonade with fresh plums from the farmers market, lemons from the backyard and a fennel simple syrup in this mix, along with seltzer water or soda water for the fizz!
Why did I use fennel seeds in lemonade? Growing up in Mumbai, my mom would make fennel seed water for us in the hot months of the year to cool us down. She would make fresh fennel sugar water everyday, and give it to us(my brother and I), when we could get back from school. Fennel seeds have a lot of medicine properties. Few of the properties are: 1) reduces the heat in the body, and helps to cool down in the hot weather 2) reduces flatulence and indigestion 3) used as a massage oil for joint pains. You can read more about the benefits of fennel seeds here . Plum and fennel seeds is a fantastic combination. It will definitely be one of my jam combinations for next year.
I made a simple syrup with the fennel seeds in the syrup and let it sit for half hour, to cool down. Then simply combine all the ingredients of the strained plum puree, lemon juice, fennel simple syrup, water, ice and a bottle of soda water, and your delicious fizzy lemonade is ready! You have to try this! It is seriously delicious! The flavor combination works so well. My kids and the other half loved this lemonade and it got over within no time! Go makes yours soon before the plum season is over! 🙂
Plum and Fennel Fizzy Lemonade
- 1 1/4 cups (250 gms) granulated sugar
- 1 ¼ cups (296 gms) water
- 2 tbsp (14 gms) fennel seeds
- 8 Sprigs of thyme
- 3-4 ripe plums, can be slightly soft too
- ¾ cup (170 gms) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups ice
- 1 33.8oz or 1 liter of a bottle of soda water or seltzer
- 1. Making the simple syrup: In a small saucepan, on medium heat, add in the sugar, water, fennel seeds, and thyme. Stir it to combine. Let it come to a slight boil within approximately 3 minutes. Make sure that the sugar has completely dissolved. Once boiled for a minute, and the sugar has dissolved, switch off the gas, cover the saucepan and let the mixture steep for 10 minutes.
- 2. Cut the plum into slices, remove the seed and puree the plums, along with the skin, in a high speed blender to form a smooth puree.
- 3. Strain the steeped simple syrup into a small pourable bowl. Mix the plum puree into the syrup and mix to combine. Now strain the mixture through a medium sieve to discard any solids. Next strain the mixture again through a fine sieve so that you get a smooth liquid that is perfect for a lemonade. Straining the mixture through the fine sieve may take some time but it is so worth it!
- 4. Once the mixture is strained, in a large jug or pitcher, combine the mixture, along with lemon juice, 2 cups of water and 2 cups of ice and stir until well blended. Chill it until ready to serve.
- 5. When ready to serve, add in the bottle of soda water or seltzer and serve with a plum slice!
- 1. Use the same base recipe, and change up the fruit and the seed to make your own lemonade combination like strawberries and black pepper or peach and mint.
- 2. You can omit the soda water and add an extra 2 cups of water instead. I love the effervescence from the soda/seltzer especially in the hot summers.