Summer is the best time of year to entertain. The days are longer, the weather is beautiful, and in general, the vibe is more relaxed. We love having families over during the summer months. The adults hang with me in the kitchen and the kids run around having fun. It’s super low key, just the way we like it.
The key to entertaining is planning ahead. While you can make yourself crazy with the endless details, my focus is the food. No shock there, right? I love the process of creating a menu. I take into account how many people are coming, what’s in season, and diet restrictions. Make ahead menu items are always a bonus. I want to spend less time working and more time enjoying my guests.
One of my favorite make ahead menu items is a signature drink. A house drink makes a big impression and makes an ordinary get together feel like something special. It’s easy to do and always a big hit!
Strawberry Lemonade is a summer favorite. I’m absolutely crazy about the gorgeous color. A tall pitcher of this delicious drink brightens any bar and is a great way to greet your friends. I serve this over ice and sometimes pop whole strawberries and slices of lemon in the glass.
If you want to make an adult version with alcohol I’m pretty sure no one will complain. Think about adding a little vodka and it’s an amazing summer drink.
- 12 strawberries, stems cut off
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 cups cold water
- Puree strawberries and 2 tablespoons of water in a blender.
- Push puree through a sieve to remove seeds.
- Mix strawberry puree, fresh lemon juice, sugar, and cold water in a pitcher until sugar dissolves.
- Taste and adjust if more sugar is required.
- Garnish with whole strawberries or slices of lemon.