I’m not one to brag, but I brew the best gosh darn homemade strawberry oat milk latte this side of the Mississippi. You’re probably thinking, it sure sounds like she’s bragging. And yet, like usual, you’re wrong. I’m just stating a fact. That said, I can’t take all the credit for my success. I’d never hold this illustrious title if it wasn’t for the strawberry cheong video below. Johnny Sheldrik @johnnykyunghwo, I am forever in your debt.

For a little background, cheong is a sweet fruit syrup popular in Korean cuisine. Although cheong is traditionally used as a base for tea, the sweet & tart & sour summertime syrup beautifully elevates every drink from your morning cold brew to your midnight blueberry Moscow mule. Not only is it inexpensive to make your own cheong at home, but it’s incredibly simple.

How to make cheong at home

Clean, chop, and weigh your fruit. Mix the fruit with half of its weight in granulated sugar. For example, if you have one pound of chopped fruit, mix it with half a pound of sugar. Pour the mixture into a clean container like a mason jar. Top with another round of the same amount in sugar (now, the mixture should be equal by weight of sugar and fruit). Put the top on your container/mason jar and put the container in your fridge. After a week, your syrup should be ready. If you don’t want the fruit bits in your syrup, use a strainer before putting syrup in its permanent container.

How to prepare cheong safely

Make sure you’re mixing your cheong daily, and keeping the berries submerged. This will keep the cheong from molding (if that happens, don’t drink the cheong). A little fermentation is fine, but white patches of mold shouldn’t be risked.

Drinks you can use cheong in

Cheong is magnificent in mocktails/cocktails.

Cheong is luminous in lemonades.

Cheong is candescent in coffee.