The basics: Make a simple syrup, then steep the flavorings in the syrup. Strain syrup, mix it with freshly carbonated water, and serve
The home cook: For most of her life, food writer Emily Ho didn’t like soda—it was too sweet, too artificial tasting, and held no appeal for this farmers’ market devotee. But then her boyfriend, a soda fiend, started carbonating his own water to mix with ready-made syrups. “Watching him, I had a eureka moment when I realized that I could tailor soda to my own palate using seasonal flavors,” Emily explains. She started foraging on walks through Los Angeles’ canyons and her Silver Lake neighborhood, plucking ingredients like elderflowers and oranges.
About that first batch ... Delicious. And afterward, everywhere Emily looked, she saw soda inspiration: rosemary in a friend’s garden, cherries from the farmers’ market, and tasty by-products of her own cooking, like pummelo juice left over from making candied pummelo peel.