Homemade Orange Soda

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When you think of canned orange soda, what do you picture? Neon-orange colouring, enough sugar to sink a ship and artificial flavouring come to mind. Forget store-bought pop and start fresh with a DIY homemade soda that’s healthier, cheaper, easy to make and tastes like the real deal.

Homemade orange soda
Recipe and photography by Veronica Sheppard

Ingredients

4 large oranges, to zest and juice
1 lime, to zest
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup honey
1 bottle of sparkling water
4 citrus wedges, for garnish

Preparation

  1. Zest the oranges and lime thoroughly. Put the contents in a large pot.
  2. Pour the sugar and honey over the zest and stir.
  3. Proceed to juice the oranges, either using a juicer or your hands, until you have about two cups of liquid. If you’re short of two cups use water to fill in the remaining amount.
  4. Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes until your mixture has noticeably lessened. Remove from heat and allow the mix to cool for roughly five minutes, stirring occasionally to help the process.
  5. Strain out all of the zest by using a fine sieve, adding the remaining syrup to a Mason jar with a tight lid. Discard the strained zest.
  6. Cool the mixture in the fridge for two hours.
  7. Once your syrup has chilled, it’s ready to be mixed with sparkling water. Use a general ratio of a quarter cup syrup for every cup of sparkling water.
  8. Serve this up in a pitcher full of ice and citrus slices, or serve in individual glasses at parties or for kids.

Tips

  • You can make this in advance. The Mason jar makes for a portable container you can easily bring to the cottage, beach or park.
  • If you don’t have a zester, you can easily use a grater of any size. The zest is used to infuse flavour into the syrup, then gets discarded — this means you don’t have to worry if it looks perfect or not.
  • If your guests want their drink sweeter, add in a spoonful of honey or use a higher quantity of syrup per drink.

Veronica Sheppard is a Toronto-based freelance writer and photographer. To see more of her work, follow Veronica on Twitter and Facebook.

Serving Size: 4

 

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