Bruising, or partially crushing, the verbena helps draw out its essential oils. Substitute vodka for gin, if you prefer. If you make this ahead, stir in club soda just before serving so the drink stays fizzy.
Cooking Light JUNE 2009
1. Combine 1 cup water and sugar in a small saucepan. Rub torn verbena to bruise; add to pan. Bring sugar mixture to a boil, stirring gently as needed to dissolve sugar evenly; cook 30 seconds. Remove from heat; cool completely. Strain mixture through a sieve over a bowl; discard solids.
2. Combine sugar mixture, gin, soda, and juice. Serve over ice. Garnish with verbena sprigs and lime slices, if desired.
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