Recipe by Lori Ross
Makes about 1 1/4 Cups
Basic sugar syrup ingredients
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
In a medium saucepan, combine the water and sugar. Bring to a simmer over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Cover and remove from the heat. Let stand for 30 minutes. Strain the syrup into a clean bottle or jar and refrigerate. Keep for 30 days refrigerated.
ORANGE AND CRANBERRY SYRUP: Add the zest of 1 orange removed in large strips with a vegetable peeler, and 1/4 cup fresh or frozen cranberries to water and sugar then continue with recipe.
MINTED LIME SYRUP: Add the zest of 2 limes removed in large strips with a vegetable peeler, along with 3 mint sprigs to water and sugar then continue with recipe.
Add 3 Tbsps lemon zest and ¾ cup lemon juice to water and sugar.
LEMONGRASS OR LIME LEAF SYRUP
If you can find lemongrass stalks or kaffir lime leaves, add ½ cup of sliced, bruised lemongrass or ½ cup lime leaves to water and sugar.
GINGER SYRUP For a more intense flavor, make this syrup a day before you plan to use it to allow the ginger to sit in the syrup, refrigerated, overnight. Add one three-inch piece fresh ginger, finely diced , to water and sugar, then heat.
Variation: add ¼ cup fresh chopped mint to ginger syrup.
For one drink, fill a tall glass with ice and 1 cup sparkling water:
Lime-Mint Spritzer: Pour 1/4 Cup Of Lime Syrup Into Glass And Add 6 Crushed Mint Leaves Garnish With A Twist Of Lime.
Apple-Ginger Sparkler: Pour ¼ Cup Ginger Syrup Into Glass. Garnish With Cinnamon Stick And A Piece Of Crystallized Ginger. Variation: Use Sparkling Cider Instead Of Sparkling Water.
Sparkling Lemonade: Pour ¼ Cup Lemon Syrup. Garnish With Fresh Mint leaves and lemon slices.
Use sugar syrup to make classic lemonade (with still water) that is evenly sweetened and has no un-dissolved sugar at the bottom.