Lemonade surely isn’t unique Peruvian. However, the Peruvian version, the Limonada peruana, is so different from the taste which we associate with a good lemonade, you should really try it if you have the chance. Even though (extremely) sweet, it’s light and refreshing with a subtle bitter taste; perfect and absolutely delicious on hot summer days.
As the yellow lemons we know from back home aren’t widely available in Peru, the star of the Peruvian lemonade is the Limon peruano with its unique, intense flavor and extreme acidity. Blended whole, yes with skin and all, it gives this non-alcoholic refreshment its typical Peruvian flavor.
Making Peruvian lemonade at home just takes a few minutes and is super simple. So go for it.
Before you start some advice
- Best use the small Peruvian limes to get the typical Peruvian flavor; even though not ideal, you may substitute with key limes.
- As the limes are used with skin, wash them thoroughly.
- To avoid bitterness, only blend the fruits for a few seconds!
- Use brown sugar. You may, of course, substitute with white sugar or another sweetener.
- Peruvians like their limonada sweet, so most recipes ask for lots and lots of sugar. So best start only adding a tablespoon or two of sugar and then adjust to your taste.
- Peruvian lemonade is best served immediately. You can store it a few hours in the fridge, but the longer it stands, the more bitter it gets.
LimaEasy's recipe for Peruvian lemonade
- 5 Peruvian limes (if you use the larger key limes 3 are enough)
- 1l (4 cups) cold drinking water
- 2 - 6 Tbsp brown sugar
- ice cubes
- First, prepare the limes: wash thoroughly, remove the top and bottom, then cut into quarters and remove any seeds. If you want to further reduce bitterness, you can remove the white skin in the middle of the lime.
- Place the limes in a food processor, add half of the water and blend for 5 (!) seconds. That’s more than enough time to get all the flavors we want and short enough to keep the bitterness at bay.
- Pour the mixture into a sieve over a bowl and then return the liquid to the food processor. Add sugar, the rest of the water and a few ice cubes. Blend until your Peruvian lemonade is whitish and slightly foamy.
- Serve immediately, adding some more ice cubes.