Mint is one of those herbs that can take over the herb garden, if you’re not careful. (Lemon balm is another, which I learned the hard way.) I usually plant mint in a place without a lot of grass and let it run rampant as a kind of ground cover. That means there’s always plenty of fresh mint on hand when I need it. On Quora, someone asked a question about how to use an abundance of mint leaves. Here are my suggestions.
- Add mint leaves to your iced tea when brewing it. My favorite iced tea is 3 green tea teabags, a handful of mint leaves and a spoonful of honey. Let brew 10 minutes, then pour over ice.
- The mojito is one of the best summer cocktails. Muddle (gently crush) mint leaves with sugar and lime juice. Add 1-1/2 ounces white rum and stir. Top with ice and sparkling water. Variations on this theme abound.
- Mint pesto: You may want to temper the mint flavor by combining it with another herb, such as basil or parsley. I think mint pesto tastes particularly good with almonds substituted for the pine nuts. Puree: 2 cups herbs (maybe 1-1/2 cups mint and 1/2 cup basil or parsley), 2 garlic cloves, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan and 2 tablespoons toasted almonds. Use as a pasta sauce, spread for crackers (good with goat cheese) or to flavor soups.
- Mint goes particularly well with cucumbers and watermelon. Classic cucumber raita is plain yogurt combined with diced cucumber, chopped mint, lemon juice, salt and pepper. For a refreshing fruit salad, muddle mint with sugar, then toss with watermelon balls. Or combine watermelon with tomatoes and crumbled feta; drizzle with a vinaigrette made from olive oil, lime juice and minced mint.
- A simple recipe but subtly delicious: gently boil new potatoes with mint leaves in the water.
Any other ideas?