My fridge is full of syrups. Besides the obligatory maple, there’s some cheap-o “pancake syrup,” some berry honey, a bottle of simple syrup, and a bottle of honey syrup. Historically speaking, the last two have been used primarily for cocktails, but literally everyone should have them in their fridge, whether they drink or not.
You see, the beauty of cocktail syrups lies in how easily they go into solution. Unlike crystalline sugar or unadulterated honey, these diluted sweeteners don’t need a ton of agitation or heat to disperse. This is very helpful in the kitchen.
They’re also extremely easy to make. For simple, just heat equal amounts of sugar and water (cup for cup) in a sauce pan over medium-high heat until the sugar dissolves. For honey, use a mixture of three parts honey and one part hot water. Both will keep in the fridge pretty much indefinitely.
I am not known for drinking water, but these syrups help keep me hydrated. Recently, I’ve been making single servings of lemonade- and limeade-esque beverages, sweetening them on the fly with a few squirts of honey or simple syrup, depending on my mood. I might be adding ginger syrup to the mix as well, because ginger lemonade is going to sound pretty good once the weather warms up.
In terms of food, I’ve been using the honey syrup in vinaigrettes, and I’ve swirled the simple into sauces, both peanut and marinara (don’t tell my Italian boyfriend). Sugar makes everything—even savoury foods—taste good, and a teaspoon or so of syrup can help make a dish taste complete.
Do you enjoy iced coffee or tea? You simply have to have simple on hand. There is no way around it. Though it is easy to make a little bit of the stuff in the microwave, it is much easier to make a bottle of it and lazily stir it into your morning cold brew. Life is already hard enough; make yours simpler with syrups.