Perth seems like another lifetime by now. I think I’ll save my report on Margaret River for later this week, since I have yet to upload the photos from that trip. At the moment, I want to talk about strawberry basil lemonade, and the three weeks I spent in nuclear camp.
Yes, you read that right. I am a nuclear physicist, and in an effort to try to figure out important life questions like what the hell I want to do with my life, I occasionally try new things. This was a summer school on nuclear nonproliferation, which covered everything from cold war nuclear hysteria* to what it would be like to be a UN weapons inspector. It was awesome. So were my fellow students. Maybe it was the return to dorm life, or the fact that we spent way too much time in the same classroom together, but I haven’t actually had so much fun since I was an undergrad. Perhaps that’s telling. But I digress.
My point is that I realized I essentially want to save the world, to put it bluntly, and that I’m not the only one with that ambition. It’s kind of cool to find out there are other people out there who feel this way, and that they’re talented, motivated, and fun to hang out with to boot.
Don’t worry. I won’t get totally serious on you all of a sudden. I plan on finding a job — any job — that gets us to Europe for a couple of years, before we have too many responsibilities. The world can wait a little while.
So… Where was I? Oh, right. Lemonade. It has absolutely nothing to do with this post, except that I was making it while I was thinking about career options today, and it sort of got tangled up with all of this in my head. That and it’s a delicious accompaniment to a day full of making jam and putzing about in the garden.
*30,000 weapons, US / Soviet Union? Really? You could destroy thousands of worlds with that kind of stockpile…
Strawberry basil lemonade
I’m obsessed with lemon + basil at the moment, because I bought this tiny globe basil plant (with mini leaves) and can’t resist using it whenever and wherever I can. We went strawberry picking on Sunday at a nearby orchard, and I happened to be making jam when I started craving lemonade, so that’s what this particular combination came from. I sort of mashed up the strawberries and basil and threw it into the lemonade, chunks and all. You can blend it a little more thoroughly, or strain out the pulp, but try it first as is. I sort of liked the texture. Make sure your strawberries are ripe and flavorful.
- 1/2 c. strawberry mash (This consists of ~6 medium-sized strawberries, pressed into a pulp.)
- Juice from 6 small, juicy lemons
- ~1 c. simple syrup (Heat about 3/4 c. sugar in 3/4 cup of water until the sugar dissolves, and let cool). Add this to taste — the amount of sugar you need depends on how sweet your strawberries are and what your personal preference is. Make extra simple syrup if you like things on the sweet side.
- handful of basil, crushed
- 3-4 cups of water. This is also to taste, as the amount of juice your lemons produce will vary, and you may prefer a stronger or weaker drink.
Mix all ingredients together. Taste and adjust as required. Strain if you want a smooth drink; otherwise, don’t bother. Enjoy cold, preferrably somewhere sunny and warm.