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May I have the pleasure of introducing you to three versions of romantic, refreshing, summery, berry-filled floral lemonade?
Pink strawberry-rose lemonade
Yellow lemon-elderflower lemonade
Purple blueberry-lavender lemonade

This project was a bit of an adventure for me. I am not used to eating flowers, much less cooking with them, and some people in my family do not like the idea of flowers in or on the food, so I was excited to see how well this actually turned out!

I think the flowers during spring and summer are so beautiful, and I wanted to be able to enjoy them all year round. And what better way to enjoy them than to eat them! And since it is summer right now, I thought of lemonade as being THE one drink to make. And with the garden full of strawberries, those had to go in as well. (Actually, the idea of frozen strawberries in the lemonade came one day when we didn't have any ice cubes.)

I hope you would like to try this as well, and if you do, please let me know in the comments how it turned out! At the end of this instructable, I have written down our verdict of this family-friendly summer party drink.

Note: This recipe makes much more syrup than will be needed for one batch of lemonade, but then you have some for winter too! Also, the syrup can be used for so many more things than lemonade. What about cakes and ice cream for example? Or cereal?

Step 1: You Will Need...

Ingredients:
1 l. loosely packed rose petals (about 12 roses, preferably red as that will give the syrup a darker color)
1 l. elderflower blossoms (about 10 blossoms)
2 Tbsp. dried lavender flowers

2 l. sugar (about 2 kg.)
1/2 l. water

red and blue food coloring, optional

6 lemons
3 l. water
a little sugar, if needed
frozen strawberries and blueberries
lemon slices

Tools:
1-3 pots
liter measurement
spoon
sieve
bowl/glass jars

3 pitchers
lemon squeezer
deciliter measuring cup
fork/whisk

Step 2: Rose Syrup

The rose syrup has a heavy and perfumed flavor but results in a mild and flowery lemonade.

For the rose syrup, you will need about 12 large roses, preferably red, as those yield a pretty reddish syrup. My roses were pink and cream-colored, as can be seen in the picture, so the syrup turned out a golden color, which I decided to transform into a romantic red hue with some food coloring.

Avoid rose plants and cut roses from flower shops for this project, as those have often been sprayed and should not be eaten. It is ideal if you have roses in your own garden, but you could also beg a neighbour or friend for some.

Remove the petals from the flowers and wash them well. I first submerged them in a bowl of water to remove the larger dirt particles and then rinsed them off in a sieve.

The recipe for floral syrup varies greatly depending on who is making it. I chose to go with a fairly heavy syrup of one part water and two parts sugar, while som use equal parts of the two ingredients. Thus, I used 1 liter sugar (approx. 1 kg.) and 1/2 liter water for 1 liter loosely packed rose petals.

Bring the sugar, water, and rose petals to a boil and simmer 5 minutes. Cover the syrup with a lid, and let it cool to room temperature and steep for 3-6 hours. You will see that the petals have started becoming translucent. Do not let the syrup steep much longer than 6 hours, as the petals might then start to rot. Strain the syrup through a sieve and into a bowl or jar.

I chose to color the syrup with 10 drops red gel food coloring and 1 drop blue. Mix the food coloring in a bowl and add a couple of spoonfuls of syrup. This will make it easier to adjust the hue without ruining the whole batch of syrup. Also, the diluted color will make it easier to add just the right amount of color to the larger portion of syrup.

Keep the finished syrup refrigerated. I would image it would keep almost infinitely, but I have heard others say at least two months.

This recipe makes about 1 liter rose syrup.

Step 3: Elderflower Syrup

The elderflower syrup has a light and citrusy flavor and results in a refreshing and summery lemonade.

For the elderflower syrup, you will need about 10 elderflower blossoms. I would advise you to keep them outside. Minutes after I brought them inside, I had the whole house running around to see if it was the dog or the cat that had peed. Turns out the smell came from the elderflowers. Perhaps it's a combination of the scent of the sap from the branch and the flowers, because the flowers themselves neither smell nor taste like that!

But because of the unfortunate incident, I chose to go with a steeping method for the syrup, as I did not want to boil that stuff in the house!

So to make the elderflower syrup, combine 1/2 liter sugar (about 1/2 kg.) and 1/4 liter water. Simmer for 5 minutes.

Take the pot of syrup outside. Wash the elderflowers in a bowl of water and clip off as much of the stems as possible. You should have about 1 liter elderflower blossoms. Submerge the flowers in the hot syrup. Now, you can take the pot inside, as the submerged flowers will not smell.

Let the syrup steep for 3-6 hours. You will see that the flower have started becoming translucent. Do not let the syrup steep much longer than 6 hours, as the petals might then start to rot. Strain the syrup through a sieve and into a bowl or jar.

Keep the finished syrup refrigerated. I would image it would keep almost infinitely, but I have heard others say at least two months.

This recipe makes about 1/2 liter syrup.

Step 4: Lavender Syrup

The lavender syrup has a heavy and spicy flavor and results in a strong and flavorful lemonade.

The lavender is steeped in the syrup like the elderflowers.

You will need to make a syrup like the one for the elderflowers, consisting of 1/2 liter sugar (about 1/2 kg.) and 1/4 liter watersimmered for 5 minutes. Stir in 2 Tbsp. dried lavender and let the syrup steep covered for 5 minutes, no longer. Strain through a sieve.

I had to throw two batches of lavender syrup out because I let it steep too long. First, the syrup will become too yellow and impossible to color purple if you let it steep too long. Second, it will get a faint green taste like herbal tea in addition to the lavender flavor.

I chose to color my syrup a faint purple with 5 drops red gel food coloring and 2 drops blue. Mix the food coloring in a bowl and add a couple of spoonfuls of syrup. This will make it easier to adjust the hue without ruining the whole batch of syrup. Also, the diluted color will make it easier to add just the right amount to the larger portion of syrup.

Keep the finished syrup refrigerated. I would image it would keep almost infinitely, but I have heard others say at least two months.

This recipe makes about 1/2 liter syrup.

Step 5: Lemonade in Three Colors

With all three syrups on hand, you are ready to make some colorful, summery, berry-filled lemonade!

When I started on this project, I was unsure of how much syrup would be needed for a batch of lemonade. Would I have to substitute the sugar with syrup, or could I just add a tablespoon to the finished lemonade? It turns out the syrup needs to substitute the sugar. So get some fresh lemons, not store-bought lemonade!

For me, the following proportions were good:
juice from 2 lemons
1 1/2 dl. floral syrup of choice
water to make 1 l.
a little sugar

Whisk together lemon juice and syrup and add water to make one liter (one quart) lemonade. Stir in some extra sugar if you have a sweet tooth.

To finish the lemonade, add a handful of frozen strawberries to the rose lemonade and frozen blueberries to the lavender lemonade. Add lemon slices and ice cubes to the elderflower lemonade. I think the frozen fruit is genius because it acts as ice while adding a beautiful tint and faint flavor to the lemonade. The rose syrup colored the lemonade pink, and the strawberries added to that, but the lavender lemonade turned out pale, so the blueberries are really important for color here.

It is up to you when you will add the berries. If you serve the lemonade immediately, the berries will still be frozen, and the color will be paler and the berry flavor fainter. If you first serve the lemonade the next day (store it in the fridge), the color will be deeper, the flavor more pronounced, and the berries thawed (but not mushy).

Step 6: Verdict

Now, you are ready to serve your summer drink to friends and family!

My taste-testing group was my family, consisting of my grandma, my parents, and my brother and I (teenagers).
Although all three lemonades were a success and were well liked, it seemed as if the different versions appealed to different groups in the following way:

Strawberry-rose: The mildest and most generally accepted
Elderflower: A lady-drink (the men held their nose and sputtered!)
Blueberry-lavender: An adult-drink (my brother and I thought it was a bit too strong)

(None of them are for teenage boys with a not-so-adventurous palate! :D)

Of course, everybody is different, but these observations might help you decide which version would be best for your company. Or just make all three!

If you enjoyed this instructable, please consider giving me a vote in the homebrew contest. My mom will soon begin to study, and she really needs a new computer!

<p>I can't wait to make my own lavender syrup! It is good in so many things. Thank you for the word of caution about over steeping.</p>
You're welcome! Where do you use lavender syrup?
<p>It's great in any dairy based dessert like creme brulee, or anything that incorporates fruit. </p>
<p>I can imagine that! Thanks for your input!</p>
<p>I've got a batch of homegrown lavender that I've been meaning to use - this lemonade is the perfect inspiration! Thanks for sharing!</p>
You're welcome! Please let me know how much fresh lavender you use if you make it!
<p>All the lemonades! These look so yummy. I am especially intrigued by the strawberry-rose. I'll let you know how it turns out if I can find some spray free roses!</p>
Thank you! Please do!
<p>This all sounds so delicious, I love drinks with an herbal flavor, and the process of making them seems like a fabulously romantic summer activity :) I really want to try this. Where do you get your elderflowers? Do you have a tree in your garden? I'm just wondering if that's something you can get easily if you don't have them growing nearby. Thanks for posting! Your photos are indeed beautiful :)</p>
Thank you! Yes, these floral lemonades ARE fun to make. I have an elderflower tree in my garden, and I also got some blossoms from my neighbor. As far as I know, you cannot buy them.<br><br>Good luck making them. Please share pictures of your results!
<p>Your photos are beautiful, and I love this idea. :D</p><p>I'm growing lavender this summer and can't wait to try this out!</p>
Thank you! Please let me know how it turns out!
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Bio: Inspired by my cat Chili, who is full of fun and energy, I like to share about food and other home crafts with a new ... More »
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