Get Baked and Toasted: Get Out of Your Gardening Predicamint

Sometimes you look around your garden and think, “Gee… that gardener at Home Depot was 4000% right about the mint. It will take over my entire garden.” You want to go back and apologize for having doubted the Plant Wisdom, but instead you are up to your elbows in Mentha longifolia trying to prevent the plant from choking your poor defenseless tomatoes.

When life gives you tasty weeds, make mojitos! Or mojito like things, because rum isn’t always work appropriate.

Mojito Couscous, Caramelized Peaches and Caramelized Peach Mojito via the Fooditarian. Mojito Granita via Mac and Cheese Review.

Mojito Couscous

Mojito couscous is my go-to dish when the sun is out and I’m too sweaty to turn on the stove. You can cook, mix and serve the entire dish in one bowl! The fact that it has no meat, dairy or eggs means it’s perfect to take on a picnic. Although this salad is full of tasty, it admittedly lacks protein. To balance the dish, you could substitute quinoa for couscous (which would require another pot) or accompany it with tofu.

Ingredients:

- 1 cup of dry couscous
– 2 cups boiling water
– 8 stalks-worth of mint leaves, fancy chopped* (look down for the technique)
– 2 ½ Tbsp olive oil
– ¾ tsp kosher salt
– 1 Tbsp green peppercorns, crushed in your hands
– 1 ½ limes, juiced
– ½ English cucumber, seeded and diced
– ½ red onion, diced

Fancing chopping technique*

Directions:

Place couscous in a bowl in and pour the boiling water over it. Cover with a plate for five minutes. Uncover and fluff with a fork. If the grains are still hard, add more boiling water and recover. Form a well (imagine you’re making a coucouscano). Fill the well with olive oil and mint to extract more of the mint oils, thus reducing marinating time. Add the rest of the ingredients, toss and refrigerate.

 

Caramelized Peach Mojitos

Peaches add a summery fruitiness to an otherwise classic drink! Plus they double as a filter, preventing you from packing shredded mint between your teeth. Oh and then you have a slightly macerated peach for dessert (if you haven’t gotten your act together to make granita).

For the Caramelized Peach:

- 1 peach (or any firm pitted fruit), halved and depitted
– 2 pats/knobs/units of butter
– 2 Tbsp brown sugar

Melt the butter and brown sugar in a saute pan until bubbly. Place the peach halves in the pan, cut-side down. Let it cook for two minutes and flip. Wait another minute and remove from the pan.

For the Mojito:

- 8 mint leaves
– 1+ shot of white rum (pisco or any other white spirit)
– 1 ½ tsp brown sugar (works as a great abrasive)
– 1 lime, juiced
– Ice
– ½ Caramelized Peach
– ½ can of tonic (I like that the quinine adds a slight bitterness)
– Sprig of mint

Give your mint a slap to break some cell walls and release essential oils. Add the mint, rum and sugar to your glass.

Muddling-type-devices. (Option three is up for interpretation: Crescent Moon Wand or spoon?)

Use your muddling-type-device to crush and grind the leaves for at least 30 seconds. Add the lime juice once the mint is bruised and the brown sugar dissolved. Add ice, the peach half and top with tonic. Garnish with the extra sprig of mint.

 

Mojito Granita

Adapted from David Lebovitz by Mac and Cheese Review (because chefs like spitchains too).

Most drinks taste better frozen and slushy in the summer. Omar Knedlik knew it and chances are you do too. I’m just going to bet right now that you don’t have an ice cream machine or a frozen beverage churning device. Hopefully you have a freezer and a fork!

Ingredients:

- 2 ½ cups water
– ½ cup sugar
– 2 limes-worth of zest
– 1 cup mint leaves
– 6 limes, juiced
– 3 tablespoons rum
– 5 mint leaves, fancy chopped*

Simmer the water, sugar and lime zest in a saucepan until the sugar has dissolved. Steep the mint leaves in the sugar solution until the liquid has cooled. Strain the solution into a shallow container suitable for the freezer. Mix in the rum and shredded mint. Place the pan in the freezer and wait an hour.

What your pan scraping technique says about you.

Scrape the pan with a fork to break down the larger ice crystals and shove it back in the freezer for an hour.
Scrape the pan with a fork to break down the larger ice crystals and shove it back in the freezer for an hour.
Scrape the pan with a fork to break down the larger ice crystals and shove it back in the freezer for an hour.
Scrape the pan with a fork to break down the larger ice crystals and shove it back in the freezer.
Fluff.

Congrats! YOU MADE SUMMER SNOW. Now shove it in a glass and woo a fancy lady.

* Haha, made you chiffonade.

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Hailing from Vancouver, Kristen's still trying to figure out how to survive Montreal's Real Legitimate Canadian Winter. So far she's discovered that warm socks, giant toques and Tabby kittens all play a role in her survival. Her ultimate goal is to rank higher than KStew in the "Kristen + Autostraddle" Google Search competition.

Kristen has written 140 articles for us.

10 Comments

  1. Thumb up 2

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    Oh no. Only plant mint in very secure pots.

    Seriously, when I was growing up we had a HUGE yard and it still managed to be everywhere. Around the apple trees, around the garage, around the house, choking out the rhubarb…

    mint seems like a great idea, but be careful.

    Also your chiffonade is FANCY.

  2. Thumb up 3

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    Why are more people not excited about this? How cute are the illustrations? MORE ADORABLE ILLUSTRATIONS. The spoon/crescent wand looks kind of like an njoy sex toy to me! How great is that? SO GREAT.

    /randomlowbloodsugarcomment

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