Friday, June 8, 2012

L is for ... Lavender Lemonade & Litha

The L's have conveniently coincided with Litha, which makes this letter a little bit easier, at least in my opinion :)

Litha is one of my favorite Sabbats.  The Earth has fully woken, with green-leafed trees and flowers everywhere; home gardens are beginning to produce fruits and vegetables for the kitchen table; school's (mostly) out and there are children playing outdoors at this time of year.  Luckily, it's not too terribly hot yet here in TX.

With Litha, aka Midsummer, falling in the middle of the week this year, my Coven sisters and I plan to gather a week from tomorrow to celebrate.  It will be a family event, and finally my munchkins won't be the only kids running around, though they'll still be the youngest.  Our newest sister has children of her own, the youngest I think is 9, if I remember correctly.  We'll be having a potluck, since those seem to work well for us, probably some activities, and once the families are settled, we'll have our own ritual time set aside to honor and worship the Lady and Lord, as well as recognizing the Fae, whose magic is strong just now.

There are countless locations on the internet to find out the lore and history, associations and crafts for Litha, so I won't go into that now, though I may revisit it for next week.  This week I really just wanted to share a favorite Litha recipe: Lavender Lemondade.

My concoction was cobbled together using elements from several different recipes I've found.  This is what works for me, but feel free to modify to suit your own taste.  Enjoy!

Lavender Lemonade
makes approximately 1.5-2 gallons

12 cups water
4 cups cold water
3 cups of sugar
approx 12 sprigs lavender, buds/flowers optional
juice of 6-8 large lemons
ice cubes

Mix 12 cups water and sugar in a pan and bring to boil.  Once all the sugar is dissolved, remove from heat, add lavender and let steep for at least 15 minutes.  The longer it steeps, the stronger the lavender flavor.

Pour cold water and lemon juice into a large jug or pitcher.  Strain lavender syrup and add to water and lemon juice.  Mix well.  Taste and add additional water/sugar/lemon juice as needed.  Add ice to fill pitcher.

Garnish with lemon slices and additional lavender sprigs/buds/flowers

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