There is both an art and a science to turning lemons into lemonade. I may not be a glass half-full type of person, but for some reason, when it comes to food – that is my specialty. At work. people often joke about my motivational speaking. But still, they keep drinking the lemonade and showing up each and every day. It is what keeps me going, and puts a smile on my face – even if the lemonade wasn’t as sweet as we all wanted.
I never really thought about it like this, but for me – turning lemons into lemonade is similar to turning wine into Sangria. I love a good glass of wine, but it is not what I look forward to on a Friday evening after a long hard week. It is a well balanced cocktail that really puts a smile on my face. Last weekend I was invited to a party and was asked to bring mixed drinks. I was right in the middle of an extremely busy weekend – if I wasn’t driving kids from one place to another, I was in my office on the computer. There was not a lot going on in the kitchen this weekend – and I had these drinks hanging over my head.
I could have just brought some bottles over to the party and mixed drinks a la minute…but I wanted something easy. Something that was already prepared, and that people could just pour for themselves. It finally hit me – it was time to turn lemons into lemonade. Maybe it was because I was thinking about my upcoming business trip, or because I was looking at all the apples and pears on the counter – but I knew that Sangria was answer. I went right back to the computer, and started searching for the perfect recipe. I wanted something with fall flavors – something not too heavy, but perfect to go with a meal. I found this recipe on NeighborFood Blog and it was exactly what I was looking for. This Sangria was probably the best I have ever made, it just oozed of fall flavors. The cinnamon was incredible, with all those apples and pears – it was like a pumpkin pie in a glass.
So the next time you are looking to turn lemons into lemonade, I have a better idea…turn wine into Sangria. Then invite me over for a drink.
- 1 bottle of pinot grigio (see below for a non-alcoholic version)
- 3 cups apple cider + ¼ cup maple syrup whisked in (the maple syrup part is optional)
- 1 cup club soda
- ½ cup bourbon (see below for a non-alcoholic version)
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- 2 apples, chopped
- 2 pears, chopped
- 2 plums, chopped
Mix all the liquid ingredients together in a BIG pitcher and stir it up really well. Drop in the cinnamon sticks and fruit, give it another good stir then refrigerate for a few hours or overnight. Give it one more good stir before serving.
Note: if you do not drink alcohol, or want to make a version for kiddos, use a bottle of sparkling cider instead or wine and bourbon, and add the cinnamon sticks and fruit.
For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, please click here: Autumn Sangria