In the midst of summer, it seems that most of us are busy trying to keep cool. Whether it be by consuming many ice cold beverages, finding a shady spot in the yard to lounge, or staying inside an air conditioned home, we have the same goal. We want to avoid the heat and humidity.
What herb speaks best of keeping cool? In my opinion, it would be mint. The very flavor of mint conjures thoughts of the icy cold: enjoying a peppermint candy, eating mint chocolate chip ice cream, or chewing on spearmint gum. Each one of these makes your mouth feel refreshingly chilly.
Mint is a versatile herb that adds a bite of flavor and coolness to many dishes. A perennial that comes in a number of varieties, it is spearmint that is most often required in recipes. Like most herbs, it is a simple plant to have in your garden, once you know how to grow herbs. As the Tasty Thought herb of the month, I am sharing a few of my favorite recipes that utilize this herb.
- 6 fresh mint leaves
- 3 tsp. sugar
- juice from 1/2 lime
- 1-1/2 oz. rum
- 2 oz. soda water
- sprig of fresh mint
- Place mint leaves and sugar in high ball glass.
- Using a pestle, muddle the mint leaves. (When muddling, you merely want to bruise the leaves to release the flavor.)
- Add lime juice, rum, and soda water.
- Stir gently.
- Add ice to fill glass.
- Garnish with mint.
- Makes 1 serving.
- 1 cup strawberries, hulled and halved
- 1 cup honeydew melon balls
- 1 cup canteloupe balls
- 1/2 cup blueberries
- 1 Tb. fresh mint, chopped
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 Tb. sugar
- mint leaves, optional
- Place strawberries, blueberries, honeydew melon, and canteloupe in medium bowl.
- In small bowl, combine mint, orange juice, and sugar.
- Pour mint mixture over fruit and stir gently.
- Chill for 2 hours.
- Place in individual serving bowls and garnish with additional mint leaves, if desired.