Ready for a cool drink? Summertime does that. Crushed ice, some slices of lime, and a tasty beverage just beckon to us.
And while I am a huge, HUGE fan of Coke-Cola, it’s the high fructose corn syrup I’d like to do without. But, that means I can concoct all kinds of other tasty beverages to serve over crushed ice.
This Lime-Mint Cooler is one of them.
Fresh Mint, the weed that you can love
Mint is a weed in the sense that it will grow wherever you don’t want it to. If you plant your own, be sure to do it in a pot. But, it can still spread its seeds. It’s a wily plant, that one. Once it takes root it is almost impossible to get rid of.
This is good news if you love mint-flavored beverages.
Over the last few months we’ve received a fair amount of mint in our produce box. At first I didn’t know what to do with it. But the folks on Good Cheap Eats’ Facebook page suggested I make mint syrup, so I did that. Peppermint Syrup and Chocolate Mint Syrup were awesome in hot cocoa and coffee drinks this past winter.
Another friend suggested mojitos. I had never had one. In fact, until that suggestion, I’d never had many mixed drinks at all. A couple months ago I started researching recipes. It’s the national drink of Cuba, in case you were wondering.
Yum! That is one tasty drink! Not boozy at all, but light and refreshing, a perfect summer drink.
If you’re looking for a non-alcoholic version of the mojito, this lime-mint would be it. (And you’re free to switch out some of the water for rum if you want the real deal.)
Since I use evaporated sugar cane juice (aka organic sugar), my syrup is a little darker than it would be if I used conventional granulated sugar. If yours isn’t exactly the same color, that’s why.
Store your mint leaves wrapped in damp paper towels in a ziptop bag in the fridge. This bunch lasted for about a month this way. total surprise!
Then make a syrup to keep on hand to mix with lime juice and club soda. Add rum for a simple mojito. Serve either over crushed ice.
Recipe: Lime-Mint Cooler
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup chopped mint leaves
- zest of 2 limes
- club soda
- lime juice
- In a small sauce pot combine the sugar and water. Cook over medium heat until the sugar dissolves and the liquid just starts to bubble.
- Stir in the mint leaves and lime zest. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.
- Strain the syrup and store in a lidded jar. Refrigerate for up to 1 week. Store in the freezer for longer storage.
- To prepare a cooler, mix 1/4 cup syrup with 3/4 cup club soda and the juice of one lime. Stir and serve over crushed ice.
- For a mojito, substitute 1 to 2 ounces of rum for 1/4 cup of the club soda.
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 5 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 8