By now everyone has probably tried kombucha and probably has strong feelings about it one way or another. I love it, but I’m the girl who adds a shot of organic raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar to a big glass of water first thing in the morning (I do it for the health benefits, but trust me, I’m not that much of a health nut…by 3PM I’m ready for some chocolate).
Kombucha, which is full of healthy probiotics, isn’t the only way to get a nice dose of probiotics in drink-form though; this Probiotic Arnold Palmer also works quite nicely. On the off chance that you haven’t tried a fermented beverage and you’re wondering whether you’ll like it, remember that wine, beer, and even coffee are fermented…and so is chocolate!
If you’re not familiar with an Arnold Palmer (the drink, not the guy), it’s a refreshing mix of lemonade and iced tea that was made famous by the golfer. I found the recipe in Julia Mueller’s beautiful cookbook Delicious Probiotic Drinks: 75 Recipes for Kombucha, Kefir, Ginger Beer, and Other Naturally Fermented Drinks. Naturally, I want to make everything in it, lol. I thought this easy Probiotic Arnold Palmer would be the perfect place to start though. Read my notes below to see what I thought of this recipe.
Probiotic Arnold Palmer
Yield: 1 gallon of Lacto-Fermented Lemonade and as many Probiotic Arnold Palmers as you want to make
Prep Time: 45 min
3/4 cup sugar
1 gallon water
1 1/2 cups fresh lemon juice (about 10 to 14 lemons)
1 cup whey (strained from 1 quart of whole milk yogurt)
Probiotic Arnold Palmer:
Black Tea Bags
For the Lacto-Fermented Lemonade:
1. The easiest method to obtain whey is to strain it off yogurt. To do so, fold cheesecloth over onto itself and lay it over a bowl. Pour 32 ounces (1 quart) of whole milk yogurt (either store-bought or homemade) onto the cheesecloth. Take all of the edges of the cheesecloth and bring them together so that you have a bundle of yogurt. Use a rubber band to secure the cheesecloth around the yogurt completely. Once you have your bundle secured, use 1 or 2 additional rubber bands to hang it from a cabinet or shelf over the mixing bowl so that gravity helps drain the whey from the yogurt. It should only take about 20 to 30 minutes to strain a full cup of whey, but wait longer if you don’t have a full cup by this time. Once your whey is strained, use it to make lacto-fermented lemonade. (Transfer the strained yogurt - which is now Greek-style yogurt - from the cheesecloth into a sealable container and store it in the fridge.)
2. In a sealable gallon jar or jug, combine the whey, lemon juice, and sugar. Add the water and stir very well to dissolve the sugar. Note that the probiotics in the whey feed off of the sugar, so you can adjust the amount of sugar to your personal taste. If you desire a sweeter beverage, use up to 1 cup sugar instead of 3/4 cup.
3. Seal the container and allow it to sit at room temperature for 2 days. A closet, shelf, or pantry works great for storage.
4. Once the lacto-fermented lemonade is ready, you can refrigerate it and drink it cold, or add ingredients to it to flavor it (see the other recipes in this section of the cookbook).
5. To store the lemonade, bottle it in sealable bottles and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
For the Probiotic Arnold Palmer:
1. On a stovetop, bring the desired amount of water to a boil. Remove the pot from the heat and add black tea bags (about 1 teabag per 1 cup of water); steep for 5 to 8 minutes. If you prefer your tea sweet, be sure to add the desired amount of sugar while the tea is still hot and stir to dissolve.
2. Allow the tea to cool quite a bit before transferring it to a pitcher and refrigerating it until completely cold.
3. Fill a glass with ice cubes and fill halfway full with Lacto-Fermented Lemonade, then fill the remaining 1/2 with the cooled tea; serve.
Delicious Probiotic Drinks, Skyhorse Publishing, Copyright 2014
This is a super crisp, refreshing beverage, of course with the added benefit of probiotics. It’s easy to make compared to many naturally fermented beverages, and the flavor is close to that of normal lemonade, so for those who want to dabble in lacto-fermentation but aren’t sure that they’ll like it, this is a great place to start.
Did this recipe deserve the cover spotlight?
Yes! In addition to being delicious and easy to make, the layered look of this drink is stunning. Serve this to your guests on a hot day and they’re sure to be impressed.