Monday, April 29, 2013

Random Cookbook of the Week: A New Turn in the South (wherein Susanna botches the recipe)

This week I drew A New Turn in the South by Hugh Acheson, one of my newer cookbooks. It's based on the food at the author's Five and Ten restaurant in Athens, GA. I've never been to Athens, but I gather the Five and Ten is where I'll want to eat if I ever make it there.

That said, given that this weekend I was still fighting off the bug that kept me in the ER on Thursday afternoon, I went with one of the simplest recipes in the book.

Lemonade with Vanilla, Mint & Rosemary

8 c. cold water
8 large lemons
1 c. granulated sugar
10 springs fresh mint
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped seeds and pod
1 spring of fresh rosemary

Pour the water in a large pot over high heat and bring to a boil. While the water is coming to a boil, halve the lemons and juice them thoroughly. Place the juice and the juiced lemon halves in a large heat-proof non-reactive pot. Add the sugar, 2 springs of mint, the vanilla seeds and pod, and the rosemary.

Pour the boiling water over the mixture. Stir carefully and let sit for 20 minutes. Stir well again and strain out the solids, then discard them and pour the lemonade into Mason jars or a large pitcher and keep refrigerated until people get thirsty.

To serve, pour the lemonade over ice in tall glasses, garnish each with a mint leaf, and sit on a porch.

Mr. Fraser and I gave the lemonade an identical verdict of "too much vanilla," and I'd decided not to make it again. Only just now as I was transcribing the recipe I realize that yesterday I misread the recipe and put in a WHOLE vanilla bean rather than half one. Maybe if I'd actually made it right, we would've been able to taste the rosemary and mint. Oops. That's a bit of a blow to my perfectionism and image of myself as a good cook! I think I'll have to give the recipe one more try after all.

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