Strawberry Rhubarb Lemonade

3 1/2 cups water
1/2 pound rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
3/4 cup sugar, or to taste
Two 3-inch strips of lemon zest removed with a vegetable peeler plus additional for garnish
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups sliced strawberries
1 cup fresh lemon juice

*Optional: Booze. And lots of it.

In a saucepan, stir together the water, rhubarb, sugar, 2 strips of lemon zest, and vanilla. Bring it to a boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves, and then reduce the heat and simmer for 8 minutes, covered. Stir in 1 cup of the strawberries and boil, covered, for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let the mixture cool for a few minutes, then strain through a course sieve set over a pitcher (might want to lay down some dishtowels to catch any drips!), pressing hard on the solids. Throw the mushy crap away and add the lemon juice, remaining strawberries, and possibly a few tablespoons of water if it’s too sweet for you. Divide into glasses filled with ice cubes, and garnish with additional lemon zest.