College Kitchen: Refreshing drinks

Spring has sprung.

Blueberry lemonade and ginger ale with lemons serve as refreshing drinks in the spring.

Juliet Farmer

Blueberry lemonade and ginger ale with lemons serve as refreshing drinks in the spring.

Yena Lee

With springtime weather comes the need for refreshing drinks. Nothing beats a nice, icy beverage on a warm day.

Instead of relying on the old classics, try something new. Enjoy the rising temperatures with a blueberry mint lemonade or homemade ginger ale in your hand.

You’re going to need all the brain power you can get for finals, so blueberries are the way to go. Blueberries contain high amounts of gallic acid, which protects the brain from degeneration, neurotoxicity and oxidative stress. The mint will help you avoid springtime sniffles — it’s known to relieve seasonal allergy symptoms.

If lemonade doesn’t float your boat, try some homemade ginger ale. Store-bought stuff won’t cut it after you try the homemade concoction.

 

Blueberry mint lemonade

 

If you are over 21, the blueberry mint lemonade makes for a wonderful mixed drink. Consume responsibly.

 

2 cups blueberries (frozen or fresh)

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup mint (packed)

1 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

5-7 cups water

2-3 cups sparkling water (optional)

 

1. Heat up 1 cup water with 1 cup sugar to make a simple syrup. Once all the sugar crystals dissolve, set it aside to let it cool.

2. In a blender, add freshly squeezed lemon juice, blueberries and mint leaves.

3. Blend it well. It will be similar to a smoothie’s consistency.

4. Pour the mixture through a fine sieve.

5. Mix the blueberry, mint and lemonade concoction with the simple syrup.

6. Add in an additional 5 cups of water.

Tip: Depending on how strong you want the lemonade to be, add more or less water. For a fun, spritzy drink, add in some sparkling water.

 

Homemade ginger ale

 

It’s the real stuff, and it tastes so good.

 

1 1/2 cups peeled and chopped ginger

1 cup sugar

a pinch of salt

2 cups water

1 quart sparkling water (chilled)

2 limes (juiced)

 

1. Once the ginger is peeled and chopped, add it into a saucepan with 2 cups of water. Let it simmer for about 45 minutes, then take it off the heat and let the ginger steep for about 10-15 minutes.

2. Discard the ginger pieces, but make sure to reserve all of the water. Add in the sugar and a pinch of salt, and heat until all the sugar dissolves.

3. Put the ginger syrup in the fridge to chill.

4. Once the ginger syrup is nice and cool, add in freshly-squeezed lime juice and sparkling water.

Tip: If you roll the lime on a flat surface prior to squeezing, you get more juice out of it.