If life gives you lemons

Posted: April 21, 2020 in Recipes
Tags: , , , , ,

There’s a saying, “If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” Where I usually walk, there’s a lemon tree heavy with fruit on the other side of the wall next to the sidewalk. The first time I walked by, there were some lemons along the path (yes, of course I picked them up!), so I started taking a bag along. Today I hit the jackpot: 5 lovely lemons.

I looked online to find some recipes/proportions for lemonade. Starting with simple syrup seemed to be the thing to do, but proportions varied greatly.

One “best lemonade ever” recipe called for 1 3/4 c. sugar heated until dissolved in 1 c. water and then after cooling, 1 1/2 cups of lemon juice with 7 cups of water added. One review said it was very sweet so I kept looking. The “perfect lemonade” suggested one cup sugar to one cup water for the syrup, then one cup lemon juice, diluted however you liked.

I made simple syrup with one cup and one cup water, added one cup of lemon juice and filled the rest of the pitcher with water. Still much too sweet for me. Added more lemon juice.

Today I used a half cup of sugar to one cup of water, a bit more than one cup of lemon juice, the rest water. Delish! I really need to find out whose lemon tree that is and ask for lemons, although it would take away the sense of anticipation and the joy of the “hunt”.

  1. Ally Bean says:

    We’ve got a bowl of lemons sitting on the kitchen counter. I sense some lemonade in my future using your revised recipe. I like tart more than sweet.

    • I’m definitely on the more tart side, Ally…in my drink tastes, of course, not my personality. Ha! I let the simple syrup cool in the fridge before assembling the lemonade and, although you probably already know this, you get more juice if the lemons are at room temperature. In a pinch, I’ve warmed them slightly in the microwave.

  2. Jet Eliot says:

    I love this story, Janet. Walking past the lemon tree on your walk, then next time remembering to bring a bag and picking some up off the ground. Searching for a good lemonade recipe, then making the lemonade and working at it until it’s just right. Great photos too. Thanks for this sweet story.

    • You’re very welcome, Jet. The first time I came to one of the dispensers put out so that people can use a small bag to pick up dog poop. I thought, “Hmm, I should take one of these in case there are some lemons.” I wondered whether people were wondering why I was carrying a rather large bag of dog poop and didn’t even have a dog. 🙂

  3. Sue says:

    Well done you!

  4. scr4pl80 says:

    I don’t really like lemonade but I do have a cup of warm water with lemon every morning before my coffee. It centers my day.

  5. Dan Antion says:

    What a wonderful thing to find 🙂

    • It was! I like to go by right when I leave for my walk so that no one else gets any fallen lemons (or birds or animals.) Gives me some excitement to start my day. 🙂 🙂

  6. JT Twissel says:

    You can also freeze lemons for later. They’re really juicy that way!

  7. Love your walk to free produce. I love fresh lemons so I’m green with envy. 🙂

    • When I used to come in January to visit my parents, I sometimes brought back an enormous bag of lemons in my carry-on. Once I had a bag of artichokes. 🙂

  8. happyface313 says:

    🙂 Sounds delicious, dear Janet!
    I drink water with slices of ginger and add some lemon juice to it.
    I pour boiling water over the ginger into a large glass and let it sit for 15 – 20 minutes. When it has cooled down a little bit I add the juice of half a lemon. I drink that every day. Throughout the day I add water and lemon juice to the mixtures. It’s tasty and a thirst quencher.
    Hope you are doing well!?
    Stay safe and healthy!
    Hugs from the other side of the world,
    Claudia xo

    • I make a drink very much like this by steeping the thinly sliced ginger in simmering water for 5 minutes, letting it steep about 10 more minutes off the heat, then putting it in a jar and adding sliced lemon. It’s good hot/warm but also very good cold.

      We’re doing very well, having gotten our move in and now being settled into our new rental house (even though there are still things to be put away and organized.) I hope you’re also doing well and staying healthy. Sending hugs back to you!

  9. lolaWi says:

    oh i love lemons and use them quite a lot. great find, Janet! 🙂

  10. restlessjo says:

    It takes a few lemons to fill a cup? I usually just add the lemon juice to plain water. I get enough sugar in the rest of my diet 🙂 🙂

  11. I think I would have done the same thing, if I had found lemons lying! Summer is almost upon us so it is going to be lemonade times!! 😀

  12. joey says:

    Nice! My mother grows them and has too many, so I bet the tree’s owner doesn’t mind you collecting the fallen fruit. Haven’t made lemonade since my grown kids were little! Sometimes I make shake-ups on hot summer days, but mostly I just drink water with lemon. Daughter #2 drinks Newman’s lemonade all the time. Lemonade is her life. If we could grow lemons here, we’d save a lot of money 😉

    • Since these are on the other side of the wall from their house, the owners don’t even know. But I still need to figure out who they are and see if I can get more in a more normal way. LOL.

  13. What a wonderful prize to collect on a walk! Looks so refreshing!

  14. marianallen says:

    This puts me in mind of a joke my husband likes about a man during the Depression who came into the general store with his arm in a cast. His friends asked him how he broke his arm. He said, “Eating breakfast.” “How’d you break your arm eating breakfast?” “I fell out of the persimmon tree.” I’ll think of you and your free-range lemons every time Charlie tells that joke. 😀

  15. Resa says:

    How wonderful that lemons grow where you live!
    Hunt, hunt, hunt away!

  16. Forestwood says:

    I am saving this recipe for later!

  17. info juices says:

    Good job, i like lemons it helps you to improve your immunity system. that’s why it is more useful for current situation of COVID-19.