Sippin Sunshine – Strawberry Basil Soda
Strawberries and fresh fragrant basil are two of my favorite things about summer, so I thought why not pair them? The result is delicious! So, sip away on a sunny day.
Strawberry Basil Soda
Excerpted from Infusing Flavors by Erin Coopey (Cool Springs Press 2016)
Makes about 1 ¼ cup syrup (up to 7 sodas)
3/4 pound fresh or frozen (thawed) strawberries, hulled
Water as needed
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup loosely packed basil leaves
Carbonated water – club soda, seltzer or sparkling water
Whole strawberries to garnish, if desired
Puree the strawberries in a blender or food processor until smooth. Strain the puree through a fine sieve, pressing firmly on the pulp with a spoon or spatula. Discard the solids.
Pour the strained strawberry juice into a liquid measuring cup. Add water to reach 1 cup, if needed.
Pour the liquid into a small saucepan. Stir in the lemon juice and sugar. Heat mixture over medium-high heat until the sugar has fully dissolved and the syrup is simmering. Remove the sauce pan from the heat and stir in the basil leaves. Allow the strawberry basil syrup to steep and cool, until it has reached room temperature.
Strain the syrup through a sieve into a sterilized bottle or jar (see note on page #) and discard steamed basil leaves.
To serve, spoon 3 tablespoons of strawberry basil syrup, or more to taste, into an 8-ounce glass, top with carbonated water, stir gently and add ice. Another option is to spoon 1 tablespoon of syrup into a champagne flute and top with chilled sparkling wine. Taste and add more syrup, if desired.
If garnishing with whole strawberries, split each strawberry almost in half, starting at the tip and stopping as you reach the stem. Rest the split strawberry on the lip of the glass.
Unused syrup can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.