DIY: Infused Water

Infused water is a wonderful and refreshing way to ensure you drink more water and feel energized. By giving water a little oomph and flavour, it becomes a treat and you don’t need to worry about excess calories, artificial flavorings and sugar.

These days you will find infused water on the shelves of department stores but these products might contain additives and to ensure you and your family get the best, prepare infused water at home as it’s a really easy DIY.

Infusing water with fruits, vegetables and herbs gives you the opportunity to be super creative and think beyond the classic universal slice of lemon as the possibilities are endless. Plan doing this on a weekend as a family activity.



Let’s get started:

Use Fresh and High Quality Ingredients:

Try and source organic ingredients as much as possible. However if you cannot, be sure to wash off the pesticides and chemicals on conventional produce. Click here to read a DIY on How to remove pesticides from fruits and vegetables at home. When using fruits, avoid the ones that are overly ripe and bruised.

Tips:

  • Soft fruits such as oranges, mosambi and strawberries infuse faster and so can be sliced thick, quartered or halved.
  • Hard fruits such as apples need to be sliced thinly as they take a longer time to release flavors.
  • For herbs such as ginger, lemongrass, mint, basil use a muddler to release the oils.
  • Use an empty tea bag for loose herbs and flowers such as rose petals and dried hibiscus before soaking.

Water:

Filtered water at room temperature or cold water is ideal. Avoid using hot water as it can break down the produce faster and heat can negatively impact the nutrients. It’s a bit like slow cooking and patience is the key as the flavors are gradually released into the water.


Vessel:

A simple glass pitcher or a mason jar serves the purpose of mixing and serving.



Soaking Time:

It takes roughly around 4 hours for the flavors to infuse but again it differs among fruits and herbs. For e.g. melon, cucumber and citrus flavour water immediately whereas apples, cinnamon, ginger need longer duration.

At room temperature, infuse water for no more than 2 hours and then transfer to a refrigerator to avoid bacterial growth.

Also fruits such as melons and strawberries tend to absorb water faster whereas whole berries and citrus fruits look refreshing even after hours. However unpeeled citrus might make the water bitter if it is soaked beyond 4 hours and therefore depending on the combination and duration you might want to use peeled citrus.

If you are not planning to consume the infused water within 24 hours, be sure to strain the solids and then refrigerate up to 3 days, but remember- fresh is always Better!




Drink-Refill-Repeat

You can refill your infused water pitcher when it is half full.  The flavors however won’t be as pronounced but yet enjoyable.

Here are some combinations you can try:

Cucumber + lime + mint
Lemon + strawberry + rosemary
Orange + blueberry + basil
Lime + ginger + basil
Watermelon + mint
Cucumber + mint + jalapeno
Lemon + rosemary
Orange + hibiscus + star anise
Orange + cinnamon
Pear + fennel

Infused waters are based on your personal taste preferences, so experiment and have fun!

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