November 9, 2012

Recipe 21 - Paris Lemon Mint Cooler Soda

This is a recipe that my sister asked me to make up for her wedding.  The idea came from something she had on her trip to Europe.  I think it was basically a sprig of mint leaves and a lemon wedge in ice water, but as I was putting this together for her reception, I thought it would be better sweetened and carbonated.  It worked out very well and I received many compliments on it.  It was such a whirlwind that I personally didn’t get any great pictures of it, but it was a great presentation.  The pictures here are courtesy of their photographer Katie.  The syrup I made was mixed into carafes with club soda.  There was a sprig of mint leaves in some, and raspberries in some others.  The raspberries added a touch of color and some great flavor that mixed in very well with the lemon and the mint. 

I also recently made this and bottled it for a cookout with friends and my kids loved it.  I thought the mint made it more of a sophisticated flavor, but I apparently couldn’t keep this around long enough for many adults to try it.  Imagine that.

1/2 cup Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp Mint Extract
1 lb sugar

This recipe is incredibly simple, but is also incredibly tasty.  Prepare your basic sugar syrup, many longtime readers know I prefer to invert mine.  If you plan on bottling this beverage to store for a while, add the lemon juice when the mixture is still hot to kill off any wild yeasts that might be in the juice.  You don’t want to boil the lemon juice with the sugar, though, or else you will destroy most of the citric acid.  If you’re planning on keeping your final beverage refrigerated or consuming this rather quickly, you can wait for the sugar to cool before adding the juice.  You definitely want to wait for it to cool before adding the mint flavor, the menthol that give mint it’s characteristic flavor boils off quickly, so you’ll end up losing some of the flavor if your sugar is too hot.  (And if you do happen to add it while your sugar is too hot, be sure your face isn’t right over the pot, menthol burns your eyes.)

This is enough syrup for 1 gallon of finished beverage, though the nature of this beverage also lends itself well to more subtle flavors.  So depending on your tastes, you may end up with enough syrup for 1.5-2 gallons finished beverage if you like your flavors and sweetness on this one a little more subdued.


  1. I'm not a longtime reader so am not sure what you mean by inverting your simple sugar. I usually do a 1:1 ratio. Thanks!

    1. Inverting sugar is basically breaking it from the disaccharide sucrose into its monosaccharides fructose and glucose. It makes it sweeter, kind of like honey (which is the sort of the same thing, just made by bees using a different method).

      There are two ways to invert sugar: with enzymes and with heat + acid. I use cream of tartar(tartaric acid) when boiling down my syrup to invert the sugar.


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