Latin Twist: Ginger Lemonade


Though steam has settled here in New York for at least a few days, we are thirsty! Well my friends, I’ve got the drink for you: Ginger Lemonade.

This is something you can easily double/triple in quantity, and keep in the fridge (I will, by the way, be serving this next Thursday at my event at La Casa Azul Bookstore! Info below…)

Back to the recipe, Ginger Lemonade boasts many attributes! It’s sweet, without being too sweet. It pairs well with so many dishes, like one I wrote up here last month,Salmon Patties , or  Brazilian Cheese Puffs  (which go well with just about anything!) and other summertime fare. And it’s a real crowd-pleasing drink! Kids love it, and, well, adults, feel free to sub this club soda with chilled Prosecco. (I had one woman who I attended a demo of mine tell me she likes to add a bit of light rum!) Ah–one more point, it’s not too tough to make! Seriously, once you make it, you will probably make it a “staple” drink in your home. ¡Buen provecho! Enjoy!



Ginger Lemonade


Adapted from Calypso Coolers, ©2006,   Arlen Gargagliano


Serves 4


2 cups water

2 inches fresh gingerroot, peeled and sliced

1 cup sugar, plus additional to taste

3/4 cup fresh lemon juice, 4 half-moon slices of lemon for garnish

1/4 fresh cup lime juice

Crushed ice

Club soda

Fresh mint leaves and/or sugar cane sticks for garnish


In a medium saucepan, combine the 1 cup of the water with the sugar and ginger and cook over a medium flame, stirring frequently, until the sugar has dissolved. Let cool to room temperature. Strain into a pitcher. Add the remaining water, lemon and lime juice, and either refrigerate for up to one week, or serve immediately. Fill four glasses with crushed ice. Fill three quarters of the way with the ginger lemonade mixture. Stir and top with club soda. Garnish and serve.


On Thursday July 26,  from 6pm – 7:30pm, at La Casa Azul Bookstore,  I’ll be doing and In the Kitchen with Arlen event:

In the Kitchen with Arlen /En La Cocina con Arlen    From preparing a small soirée for close friends & family, to making an intimate dinner for two, entertaining should be satisfying, not stressful! Arlen, cookbook author, teacher & home chef will share her tips for entertaining Latin style. Sumptuous sips & light treats from her cookbooks will be shared!

La Casa Azul Bookstore,  143 E. 103rd Street, New York, NY 10029, Phone: (212) 426 – 2626

Hope to see you there! (You can let me know by commenting here–or on my Facebook page!)


About Author

Maybe it was the dinner parties my mom always threw—or the hours I spent prepping and cooking alongside her (and then on my own!). Or maybe it was array of fabulous dishes that my family sampled in New York City’s richly diverse restaurants, but I’ve loved creating, savoring, and sharing food for as long as I can remember. Living in Spain, and later in Peru, also greatly influenced my life. These years abroad taught me Spanish—and about living in different countries--but also introduced me to teaching English as a second language, which I’ve done—mostly in the US-- for the past 20-plus (yikes!) years. I’ve authored two cocktail/tapas books, Mambo Mixers and Calypso Coolers, coauthored more than 15 others (mostly food related!), and raised two children. Now I'm chef and owner of my own restaurant, Mambo 64 in Tuckahoe, New York. My message is the same, whether I'm teaching, writing, running the restaurant or being a regular guest on the Spanish-language network Telemundo (on the morning show, Buenos Días Nueva York!). My belief in food—and the power of food—is far reaching, and is married with another one: the power of stories. I’m sure that if we could all sit down and have meals together, sharing both tastes and tales, we’d have peace on earth. Enjoy!

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