I used to squeeze the lemons for lemonade as a young girl; now my own children have taken over.
I think of Pesach back in Lugano, where I grew up, and the scent of lemon oil hits me immediately. Lemon oil is that oil that comes out of the lemon peel if squeezed too hard. I was 6 and I loved the electric citrus juicer my mom had purchased for Pesach. My job was to squeeze all the lemons in the huge crate, and I was sooo good at it. I squeezed those lemons really hard. And that pungent lemon oil smell stays with me until today.
Today, my 6-year-old daughter stands on the kitchen stool beside me, and juices lemon after lemon with precision and care. She reminds me so much of me at that age. She hasn’t stopped blabbering since she entered the kitchen. Right now she is listing all the people that will enjoy “her” lemonade. The list is growing, and she is glowing. We will serve her lemonade at every single meal, and she will be incredibly proud, every single time. And every time, we will compliment her anew.
This lemonade is something my children look forward to every single Pesach. I remember feeling the same way, as a kid, as well.
- 7 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 15-18 lemons)
- 4 cups of sugar
- 2 cups of water
- In a small saucepan, heat sugar and the water until mixture is clear. Mix well. Move off heat and let cool.
- Once cooled, combine ½ the simple syrup (the sugar and water mixture) with the lemon juice. Slowly add the rest, tasting from time to time. You need to decide how sweet you want your lemonade to be; everyone's preference is different.
- Divide the lemonade concentrate in disposable cups that have been set up on a tray.
- Place the tray in the freezer.
- Yields 18 cups of concentrated lemonade. I usually use 2 per pitcher.
Once the concentrate is frozen you can transfer all the cups in one large Ziploc bag, for easier storage.
When ready to use, pop 2 cups of concentrate straight from the freezer (no need to defrost) into a large pitcher. Add water and mix from time to time. Serve and enjoy!