Books for cooks


"Lemonade" and "Iced Tea"
By Fred Thompson
(The Harvard Common Press, Boston,
2002, hardcover, $12.95 each)

StarStar 1/2

Freshness, speed mix
in iced-tea and
lemonade recipes

By Barbara Burke
Special to the Star-Bulletin

Summer is slipping away, but the need for a cool, refreshing thirst-quencher doesn't disappear just because the calendar page is turned. Hot, sultry weather can engulf us any time of the year. So, it's always a good idea to be prepared with an arsenal of great-tasting beverages, from simple to sophisticated, to keep dehydration at bay.

Fred Thompson comes to the rescue with his new books, "Lemonade" and "Iced Tea."

The author shows us that it takes only minutes to make homemade versions of these popular drinks that will surpass the quality of anything found on a grocery shelf.

As you might suspect, his recipes begin with the best ingredients, including fresh lemons and limes and quality tea bags and loose-leaf tea. But, just when you think he is a purist, the author surprises you with a hurry-up recipe that improves upon a powdered iced-tea mix or frozen lemonade or limeade concentrate.

A Southerner by birth, Thompson makes no excuses for the generous amount of sugar that he uses in his lemonades and iced teas. Feel free to adjust the sweetness to your taste in any of the 50 quick and easy recipes each book offers.

Kaffir Lime Lemonade is probably the most exotic recipe in "Lemonade" and has a mysterious and complex flavor.

Kaffir Lime Lemonade

4-1/2 cups cold water
1 cup granulated sugar
4 fresh bay leaves or 2 dried
8 kaffir lime leaves
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 4 limes)

In a saucepan, combine 2-1/2 cups of the water, sugar, bay and lime leaves. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat, then remove from heat; cover, let steep 30 minutes.

Strain mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a 2-quart container. Stir in lemon juice, lime juice and remaining 2 cups water. Chill until very cold and serve over ice. Makes about 1-1/2 quarts.

Approximate nutritional information per 8-ounce serving: 110 calories, no fat, cholesterol or protein, 5 mg sodium, 29 g carbohydrate.

While green tea pairs well with a variety of fruity flavors, the author says passion fruit is the best choice for this recipe from "Iced Tea."

Green Tea and Passion Fruit Spritzer

4 cups cold water
3 regular-size green tea bags
1/3 cup honey
2 cups passion fruit nectar
Chilled sparkling water, as needed
Fresh mint sprigs for garnish (optional)

Bring 2 cups of the water to a gentle boil in a small saucepan. Add the tea bags, cover and remove from the heat. Let steep for 15 minutes.

Remove the tea bags without squeezing them. Stir in the honey until dissolved.

Pour the sweetened tea into a 2-quart heat-proof container. Add the remaining 2 cups cold water and the passion fruit nectar. Let cool, then chill.

When ready to serve, fill 6 tall glasses with ice. Fill each glass three-quarters full with tea and top off with sparkling water. Garnish with a mint sprig, if desired. Makes 6 servings.

Approximate nutritional information per serving: 110 calories, no fat, cholesterol or protein, 10 mg sodium, 28 g carbohydrate.

Rating Scale: StarStarStarStar Best in its class / StarStarStar Highly recommended / StarStar Recommended / Star Not recommended

Barbara Burke is a Hawaii-Pacific University instructor who teaches and writes about food and nutrition. Contact her at the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, Honolulu 96813; or e-mail her at:

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