Sunday, June 16, 2013

Mint Leaves

It is the destiny of mint to be crushed.

Waverly Root ~ food writer

So fitting as it relates to mint.  If you have used mint at all you know that crushing it releases the desired essential oils.  Those lovely essential oils we are all so familiar with to flavor candy and tea.  When I first wrote about the herbs I was going to grow this year I gave you a recipe for mint syrup to add to tea, top ice cream with, add to coffee, the possibilities are endless. 
Today  I am writing to tell you an even easier way to use mint in your ice tea.  Ice Cubes! 
It is so simple and fun because as you are cutting and crushing the mint leaves the aroma will help lighten your mood and even energize you.  Mint is also full of magnesium of which is essential for over 300 bodily functions.  Including muscle and nerve function, maintaining a regular heart beat, strengthening your immune system as well as regulating blood sugar and blood pressure levels.  Maybe we could all use a daily dose of mint!
Once your mint has taken off and become full cut it all back at least half way.  It will grow back again in a few weeks for another cutting.  Take about 30-40 leaves and crush/cut/tear them.  Throw them into a saucepan with 2c of water.  Bring to a quick boil, take away from heat and let it all cool down until room temperature.  Strain the water and pour into ice cube trays.  You can add 1 mint leave to each cube making sure it is all submerged and freeze.  They will stay green since the water is at room temperature now and you will only have 1 full mint leave floating around in your glass as opposed to many little pieces.  You can also leave the mint leaf out all together, the ice cube is already minty enough. When that batch is done repeat collecting all the ice cubes in a freezer bag. 
The next time you pour yourself a tall glass of tea or fresh lemonade add your mint ice cubes. 

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