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Gastrokid: Fresh Fruit Kiddie Cocktail

Gastrokid: Fresh Fruit Kiddie Cocktail
Nowadays, our Gastrokids have access to food-mileage-heavy berries and other exotic fruit year-round, but nothing beats the succulence of late spring in the form of early summer strawberries, really juicy blueberries or a mango that tastes of . . . well, mango. This is a recipe that celebrates the freshness in a fun and delicious way. Please welcome the Gastrokid Fresh Fruit Kiddie Cocktail, or DIY soda, if you prefer.

Compared to store-bought sodas, DIY soda is simultaneously healthier, better for the environment and way more delicious. You would be amazed at what character, flavor and color the fresh juices bring to the drink and make up for all the additives that kids can become accustomed to. We like using a cocktail shaker, as it efficiently mixes the ingredients with flair and is something your Gastrokids can help with.

This basic recipe serves one and is intentionally low in sugar, as we think the fruit offers sweetness aplenty. Try oranges, grapes, blueberries or any other fruit that is in season, then modify measurements of lemon juice and simple syrup to suit you and your family's tastes. A touch more sour? Need it a little sweeter? You are in control!

Oh, and as long as the sun is high in the sky, then grown-ups might consider sneaking a shot of vodka into their cocktails. Just keep them out of reach of the kids!

Fresh Fruit Kiddie Cocktail
An electric juicer works great for preparing the fresh-squeezed juice called for in this recipe. Or you can simply mash the fruit in a bowl with a wooden spoon, then pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer to capture the excess pulp, skin and seeds. Simple syrup is made with equal parts sugar and water. You can prepare a big batch by simmering sugar in water in a pan on the stovetop, and stirring until the sugar dissolves.

1 cup water, sparkling water or club soda (to make it fizzy)
2 or more fl. oz. fresh-squeezed seasonal fruit juice
1 fl. oz. fresh-squeezed lemon or lime juice
1 fl. oz. simple syrup
Fresh fruit slices for garnish

In a cocktail shaker filled halfway with ice, combine the water, fruit juice, lemon juice and simple syrup. Shake vigorously, then strain into a durable tumbler filled with ice. Garnish with slices of whatever seasonal fruit you used for the juice. Serves 1.

The Tool
Every household should have a decent cocktail shaker. One with a glass base or a Boston shaker will allow kids to see the cocktail taking shape before their eyes while you (or they) shake. A traditional metal shaker with a built-in strainer will come in handy for allowing your older Gastrokids to shake and pour with classic bartender-like aplomb.

Kid Step
Kids are great at shaking cocktails. Have them count about 10 shakes to do the trick. Just make sure they hold the lid on tight!

Gastrokid is dedicated to helping raise foodie families by cooking the best food possible together and having fun while doing it. For more family friendly recipes and tips, go to www.gastrokid.com.