Black peppercorns are totally transformed when steeped in a simple syrup. Here, in a simple limeade, fresh-squeezed lime juice brings out the bright citrusy notes of the pepper and adds a nice kick. Grind the peppercorns very coarsely—just a pulse or two in a spice grinder or a few thwacks with a heavy pan. You want half or so to still be whole.
- Yield:Makes a little over one quart of limeade
- Active time: 15 minutes
- Total time:8 hours
- For the Black Pepper Simple Syrup:
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/8 cup black peppercorns, very coarsely ground
- For the Black Pepper Limeade:
- 3 cups water
- 3/4 cup lime juice from about 10 limes
For the Black Pepper Simple Syrup: Bring the sugar, water and black peppercorns to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat, let cool to room temperature, and strain through a fine mesh strainer to remove the cracked peppercorns. Refrigerate until ready to use. Black pepper syrup will keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
For the Black Pepper Limeade: Combine water, lime juice, and 3/4 cup black pepper simple syrup in a pitcher and stir to combine. Refrigerate until completely cold and serve in ice-filled glasses, garnished with lime zest if desired.