I love the old saying, “when life hands you lemons, make lemonade.” It carries such an empowering message about overcoming obstacles that we face day to day, and whoever came up with it couldn’t have chosen a better fruit. Lemons are a natural mood booster and their scent has calming, stress-relieving properties. I bet an ice-cold glass of lemonade would go a long way to help you power through a bad day. And lemons do more than just brighten your mood—they’re great for your skin! Lemons contain a ton of vitamin C, which stimulates the production of collagen to smooth and firm skin. And lemon is also an antioxidant that protects skin against damage by free radicals.
Lemons hit their peak in summer, so ‘tis the season to enjoy these tart citrus fruits. And don’t forget about the zest—it packs a tangy punch that brightens everything from baked goods to salad dressings to steamed veggies. Here are three easy recipes that showcase for enjoying all they have to offer.
*To make simple syrup, heat 1 1/4 cups sugar and 1 1/4 cups water over low heat until the sugar is dissolved.
Stir together the simple syrup, lemon juice, mint, and cold water. Refrigerate for one hour to let the flavors develop. Garnish with slices of lemon and sprigs of mint before serving. Serves 10
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Thinly slice the lemons, zucchinis, and red bell pepper, and quarter the onions. Toss veggies and garlic in 2 Tbsp olive oil and evenly divide between four large squares of aluminum foil. Top each with a fish fillet seasoned with salt and pepper, slices of lemon, and two sprigs of thyme. Drizzle the remaining olive oil over the fish, and then fold up the sides of foil to make air-tight packets. Bake for 20 minutes, or until cooked through. Serves 4
Juice the lemons and whisk in olive oil and black pepper. Combine all of the salad ingredients in a large bowl, and toss with the dressing. Serves 4