CF, DF, EF, FF, GF, GRF, MF, NUTF, SALF, SOYF, SUF, YF
Take the berries off the stems and place in a bowl (you can toss in the stems too if you like). Add water to cover the berries and let sit 15-30 minutes. Line a sieve with a coffee filter and strain the liquid. Done! Add stevia to sweeten. Refrigerate or add ice before serving if desired. Keep remainders refrigerated.
Sumac is usually harvested in mid-summer, in the months of July and August.
Like most herbs, you want to collect the berries (called drupes) when it hasn't rained in at least 2 days. Do the taste test before harvesting: lick your finger, run it over the berries, then re-lick your finger. The taste should be pleasantly sour. If it's early in the season and some of the berries are still green, then they aren't ready yet. If you're harvesting in September, the berries might be past their prime.
Because Sumac berries are high in Vitamin C and because they are high in tannins, you want to use TEPID/ROOM TEMP/COLD water for soaking them, NOT HOT.
You also really want to have that unbleached coffee filter (or cheesecloth) lining your sieve, as you don't want any small hairs in your Sumac-ade!
While Sumac-ade is tasty all on its own, tasting just like lemonade, adding stevia helps to counteract the sourness.
Variation: Sumac-ade Lemonade: Add 1/2 Lemonade OR Lemon Detox Water (recipes below) + 1/2 Sumac-ade. Feel free to sweeten with stevia.
To make Sugar-free Lemonade: Squeeze 2 lemons (or 1/4 cup lemon juice) and add 3 3/4 cups water. You can use more or less lemon juice, as you prefer. Add stevia to taste to sweeten. NB. You can also try this with lime juice.
To make Sugar-free Lemon Detox Water: Simply slice 1 fresh lemon and add the slices to a 1-liter mason jar with 4 cups water. Let sit 8 hours or overnight before straining. Refreshing and tasty all on its own! Refrigerate or add ice, if desired. Stevia can be added for a touch of sweetness. Great to drink in the morning as a way to detox the liver and body :) NB. You can replace the lemon with a lime.
As always, Enjoy :)
CF= Corn Free DF= Dairy Free EF= Egg Free FF= Fat Free GF= Gluten Free GRF= Grain Free MF= Meat Free NUTF= Nut Free SALF= Salt Free SOYF= Soy Free SUF= Sugar Free YF= Yeast Free
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