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Calming And Refreshing: Lavender Lemonade For April

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As the weather starts to heat up, you may be looking for a refreshing and tasty new way to hydrate. April is recognized as Stress Awareness Month, which means it's a time to seek out tips, tricks and even flavors that can relieve stress and help us manage the difficult moments in life. Lavender Lemonade is a drink that is both hydrating and relaxing: the perfect combination for this month.

Lavender, which has long been used to treat restlessness, insomnia, nervousness and depression, gives a floral kick to this tangy drink. According to the National Institutes of Health, the purple flower contains an oil that appears to have a calming effect, making it a good choice to ease upset in the body or mind. Mix up this recipe, adapted from Cooking Light magazine, and sip it slowly on the porch or patio.

Lavender Lemonade

Ingredients

4 cups water, divided
1/4 cup chopped fresh lavender leaves
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup fresh lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
Lavender stems

Directions

In a medium saucepan, bring one cup of water to boil, and then pour into a bowl with the lavender leaves. Let this mixture steep for 30 minutes, and then strain through a fine sieve and discard the leaves. 

Combine the remaining three cups of water and the sugar in the saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook until the sugar is dissolved, about one minute. In a pitcher, combine the lavender water, sugar water and lemon juice. Stir, cover and chill. Serve with ice and lavender stems.

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