Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Middle Eastern Lemonade





No matter how you look at it,  this Middle Eastern Lemonade is a winner in this hot weather for so many reasons!

The recipe combines fresh lemon juice, maple syrup , sliced oranges, and orange blossom water,  ( a typical Middle Eastern flavor available in many supermarkets, ethnic markets, or health food stores that does not taste like oranges).

This drink is not only absolutely delicious, but it is also bursting with minerals and antioxidants which can be readily lost by the body in really hot weather.


fresh lemons
This is an old family Recipe

I didn't create the recipe . My  husband's family has been drinking  this refreshing lemon drink with orange blossom water for generations. They lived in a really hot climate.
 They call the orange blossom water by it's Arabic name " Mahzar".

It is not only used in lemonade, but also in baking and cooking. The aroma is so wonderful that just opening the bottle and smelling the amazing fragrance will relax you.
orange blossom water
Last week my husband was doing a significant amount of  yard work.  The temperature was beastly, ( 102 degrees),  and he was sweating profusely. At times like that, your body not only needs fluids, but it needs to replace nutrients.


My husband's work in the yard

Why this lemonade is a Nutritional Power House and perfect for really hot weather!

Maple syrup provides the trace mineral manganese and the mineral zinc which are both very important to maintain a healthy immune system, as opposed to sugar which provides no nutrients and may actually rob your body of nutrients.Although maple syrup is sweeter than sugar, it only has 34 calories in 2 teaspoons.
Use Grade B and look for a raw brand.

Fresh Lemon Juice 
Lemons are high in vitamin C, full of powerful antioxidants, and can provide antibacterial benefits. Since you squeeze fresh lemons for this recipe, there are no nutrients lost in processing. Lemon juice also helps the body detox toxins.

Orange Blossom Water
This Middle Eastern essence contains no calories or nutritional benefits, but can have a very calming effect on the nervous system. Just smelling it is relaxing. Drinking it is calming.

Mint leaves
Believe it or not , fresh mint leaves are high in nutrients. They are rich in  manganese, vitamin A and vitamin C. Mint also provides fiber, folate, iron, vitamin B2, potassium and copper. I have a great herb garden in my yard, and my mint comes back every year.

This drink takes about 2 minutes to make, really cools you off,  adds to your nutrition, and is delicious.

No Comparison To Storebought
As opposed to store bought lemonade that offers very little nutritional value, empty calories, and loads of  sugar that may be too stimulating for kids ( and adults) and rob the body of nutrients.  This recipe for Middle Eastern lemonade seems like a better choice.

Which tastes better? I'll choose this recipe hands down every time.


We like to serve it without sliced oranges and lemons too... 

In this hot weather, we keep a pitcher of this old family favorite in the refrigerator . We fill a glass with ice and cover it with lemonade and then add a few fresh sprigs of mint from the garden.

I hope you try it and enjoy it on a hot summer day!

Author: Judee Algazi@gluten free A-Z Blog
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: none

Ingredients per 10-12 ounce glass
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 Tablespoons maple syrup or more or less to taste, ( or raw agave syrup)
1/8 teaspoon of orange blossom water ( Mazhar)
water to fill the glass after everything else is added.
2 mint leaves

Directions:
Fill a 10 ounce glass with ice
Add fresh lemon juice, maple syrup, orange blossom water, and mint leaves.
Stir well and enjoy.

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35 comments:

  1. You are married to a middle easterner? Me too! As soon as I saw mazahar...I knew there was a kindred spirit! Stay cool.

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    1. The Middle Eastern food is amazing!

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  2. Hi Judee,
    What a refreshing beverage, it looks delicious! Hope you are having a great week and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

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    1. I'll be back next week. Love your blog carnival . There are always so many wonderful recipes.

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  3. I love it! I've never heard of anything like it, but it's so lovely ... :) In addition to all the other benefits, just the fragrance must be so restorative, too!

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  4. Oh Mary, the fragrance is so relaxing and the drink is delightful

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  5. I never knew about the mineral content of Maple syrup. The orange blossom water sounds so interesting. I will include this drink in my monday post about summer beverages. Thanks so much for sharing it on foodie friday.

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  6. Sounds yummy! I need to find that Orange water, thanks for a great idea. Found you at Wildly Original Round Up.

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  7. This sounds so refreshing. My husband works outdoors so I worry about him on very hot days. I would love it you would share this at Sunny Simple Sundays. http://sunnysimplelife.blogspot.com/2012/07/sunny-simple-sunday-8.html

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  8. This is great recipes.......!! thx

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  9. This is amazing ...thanks for sharing .. I'm definitely going to try this!! Visiting from Seasonal Sundays...HHL

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  10. That sounds so refreshing! Thanks for sharing at Mealtime Monday!

    Kaylee
    www.couponingncooking.com

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  11. Your lemonade looks like summer in a glass. I can almost imagine sitting on the backyard patio while sipping this drink. Yum!

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  12. This is delicious!!! I could drink a pitcher of it. Thanks for making it last night for us!!! Love, Wendy

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  13. Yum!!!! I have to make this now! Saw your link up on Sew Chatty and I'm so glad I did! I've been looking around for gluten free blogs. I have so many friends who can't have gluten, and I do better without it too! Loving this!

    Love, Ashley

    {www.theyellowpicketfence.com}

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    1. welcome. Hope you will stop by frequently.

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  14. I could do with a great big glass of this right now.

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  15. This looks fab! I'm going to make this when the weather warms up around here! :-)

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  16. Looks delicious! Do you think I can find orange blossom water in the international section of my grocery store?

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    1. Maybe, some markets do carry it. I know it can be found on Amazon for sure!

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  17. I'll have to try that! I'm not a maple fan though, so I'd substitute something else. We have several middle eastern grocery stores locally, so I'll have to get some of the orange blossom water...
    http://littlehomesteadinboise.blogspot.com/

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    1. I usually use the measurements for a 1 quart jar and then I make four of them.

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  18. you said you make this by the pitcher - how much do you scale this up for that?

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  19. Looks yummy! My husband is from North Africa and they drink tea with mint daily. I love the addition of lemon and orange blossom water.

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  20. Congratulations!
    Your recipe is featured on Full Plate Thursday this week. Hope you are having a great week and enjoy your new Red Plate.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

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  21. I shall have to try this. I did not know about the nutrients in mint, so I am glad for that information.

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  22. Sounds so refreshing! Thank you for sharing with us at Healthy 2Day Wednesdays! Hope to see you again next week.

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  23. This looks so good--I'll need to track down that orange blossom water. I think I would love it. Just a few minutes ago I made some homemade lemonade by squeezing a lemon, so I'm halfway there in terms of making this recipe! I even have maple syrup.

    Thanks for linking this to Food on Fridays! I'm loving learning new ideas (and I've recently had to go gluten-free, so I'm grateful to learn from you).

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  24. I am drooling over this lemonade right now! Next shopping trip, I'm going to look for orange blossom water (though I'm pretty sure I'll have to wait until my next visit to town). Thank you for linking with See Ya In the Gumbo this week.

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  25. I'm your newest follower! My finace is Persian and he loves this lemonade! I'd like to invite you over to my linky party called Southern Sundays to share your wonderful recipe. The party starts tomorrow. Hope to see you there! www.asliceofsouthern.blogspot.com

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  26. What a gorgeously refreshing drink. I love the addition of the orange blossom water and the mint.

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  27. We will look forward to preparing this mouth-watering drink. My husband also loves to keep our garden looking nice even when it hits 105!

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  28. Love this. Thanks for sharing with Simply Delish.

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  29. Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays recipe party! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! :) YAY! Thanks for helping us build a wonderful Gluten Free Community! Its great to connect! See you next Friday! Cindy from vegetarianmamma.com

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  30. Makkah Market is a Middle East grocery store that offers their products online, making it simple to get those hard to find ingredients with great prices and reasonable shipping.

    Middle East grocery

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