Monday 5 December 2016

Make mine with ice: The best alcohol free drinks recipes

Tove Nilsson's hunt for drinks has taken her all over the world and her new book explores exciting liquid flavours and experiences - all alcohol-free

Published 19/07/2015 | 02:30

Chilled iced tea
Chilled iced tea
Red currant lemonade
Elderflower and strawberry lemonade
Book cover: Pop, Bubble and Fizz

I've drunk my way through a whole lot of what the world has to offer in refreshing alcohol-free beverages. After working as a chef and a food writer for many years, I trained as a sommelier to learn more about combining food and drink. I soon realised that it's actually not only wine, decent beer and spirits that can match with the food, but also beverages flavoured with fruit, herbs and spices.

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My new book has recipes for sodas and iced drinks, ideal for summer sipping.

In the summer I always have a jug of iced tea in the fridge. The perfect thirst-quencher, it can also be varied into infinity. Flavour it with different kinds of tea, fruit, berries and spices.

Iced teas

Makes about 1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups

You will need

1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups water

2 tbsp tea (black or green)

150g/5½oz/¾ cup Demerara sugar

3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)

lemon slices, to serve

Method

Bring half the water to the boil in a pan. Add the tea and leave it to steep for about 5 minutes.

Strain and mix with the sugar. Leave to cool, stirring a few times so the sugar dissolves. Mix with the remaining water and the lemon juice and place in the fridge. Serve with ice and a slice of lemon.

This mildly perfumed flavour from the jasmine and the fruit of ripe peach will be a favourite in an ice-filled glass.

Jasmine and peach iced tea

Makes about 1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups

You will need

2 ripe peaches

1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups water

2 tbsp green jasmine tea (sencha)

50g/1¾oz/¼ cup Demerara sugar

3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)

lemon slices, to serve

Method

Peel and cut the peaches into small pieces. Blend half into a smooth purée using a stick blender, then strain through a fine sieve. Bring half the water to the boil in a pan. Add the tea and leave to steep for about 5 minutes. Strain and mix with the sugar and peach purée. Stir until the sugar has dissolved, then add the remaining water. Leave to cool. Mix with the lemon juice and the reserved peach pieces and place in the fridge. Serve with ice and a slice of lemon.

Chai iced tea

Makes about 1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups

You will need

500ml/17fl oz/generous 2 cups water

3 tbsp clear honey

50g/1¾oz/¼ cup Demerara sugar

1 tbsp coarsely ground cardamom seeds

2 cinnamon sticks

1 tbsp black tea, preferably English breakfast, or flavoured with cinnamon or cardamom

500ml/17fl oz/generous 2 cups whole milk

Method

Bring the water to the boil with honey, sugar, cardamom and three-quarters of the cinnamon. Remove from the heat and add the tea. Leave to cool. Add the milk and serve with ice.

Elderflower and strawberry lemonade

Makes about 1.5 litres/2½ pints/6½ cups You will need

100ml/3½fl oz/scant ½ cup elderflower cordial

1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups water

150ml/¼ pint/scant ‡ cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 4-5 limes)

450g/1lb strawberries

few sprigs of mint

Method

Blend together the elderflower cordial, water, lime juice and half of the strawberries using a stick blender.

Strain through a fine sieve. Slice the rest of the strawberries and mix together with ice and the blended liquid in a jug.

Serve with mint in glasses.

Red currants, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, cloudberries, strawberries… It's great to muddle any of these into this type of lemonade. When you muddle or mash berries instead of blending, the whole berry is still left to give a fresh flavour and good texture - from stones to pulp.

Red currant lemonade

Makes about 1 litre/1¾ pints/ 4º cups

You will need

225g/8oz/1½ cups granulated sugar

1 litre/1¾ pints/4º cups water

crushed ice

150g/5½oz/1½ cups red currants

200ml/7fl oz/scant 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

(about 3-4 lemons)

Method

Dissolve the sugar in 100ml/3½fl oz/scant ½ cup of the water in a pan over a low heat. Leave to cool. Fill a large jug half full of crushed ice. Add the currants, sugar syrup and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Crush with a ladle or a muddler. Add the remaining water and serve.

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