Delivering a soft hint of minty freshness, this Mint-Infused Simple Syrup is the perfect addition to any summertime cocktail (especially mojitos!)
MOJITO WEEK, PART TWO!
Can you even handle the suspense? I’m even dying over here and I know the end result — can’t imagine how you’re feeling. (How’s that for rubbing it in 😉 )
If you missed the first installment of MOJITO WEEK (← sorry, I just can’t seem to talk about it without shouting in excitement) take a peek at the pineapple-infused rum recipe and
drool get infusing!
Today is alllll about the other essential ingredient required for the best darn pineapple mojito you’ve ever had: Mint-Infused Simple Syrup!
If you’re a mint grower, chances are, at this point in the summer, it’s completely over-run your herb garden (and vegetable garden, and flowers, and maybeeee even your grass) and you’re screaming HALP!!!! and looking for any and every way to use up the mint you are constantly trimming back before it TAKES OVER THE WORLD.
Mint-infused simple syrup to the rescue!
If you DON’T grow your own mint, do your mint-growing neighbor a favor and offer to take some off their hands. But we warned: bushels may show up at your doorstep unannounced after that.
Luckily for me I only have a potted “urban garden” so there’s a limit to how far the mint can grow. Thankfully I also wised up a bit after last year and planted my mint in a separate pot, away from my other herbs (RIP rosemary, thyme, and dill of yesteryear). My mint plant is still a bit small this year as I started planting my garden a little late because of our Italy trip, but I’m always amazed at how the stuff seems to multiply like crazy, even if I’m trimming it back every 2 days or so.
Oh darn — must make more mint-infused simple syrup mojitos to keep the plant at bay 😉
If you’ve never made a simple syrup before, it’s, well…. simple… to make. Seriously, never, ever, EVER buy it at a store. Simple syrup is an easy 1:1 ratio of sugar to water — two ingredients that I’m sure you always have on hand (especially if you’re a cookie monster like me 😉 ) and takes only a few short minutes to make. All you have to do is simmer the two together while stirring, until all of the sugar is dissolved.
And making MINT simple syrup? An absolute cinch. It’s essentially just making a standard simple syrup but including a whole bunch of mint during the process, and then letting it sit for just an extra minute or two before bottling it up. Basically it just takes one (ok, maybe 2) extra step(s) BUT it makes all the difference in taking your MOJITO from a standard run-of-the-mill mojito to one that will instantly whisk you away to a tropical paradise – relaxation, salty breeze and all!
While mint simple syrup can take just about any cocktail from drab to fab, there are lots of other yummy uses for it! Why not try:
- Sweetening your iced tea with it!
- Using it in a jam recipe. Peach + mint preserves? Yes please!
- Drizzling a little over chocolate ice cream or a chocolate cheesecake. YUM!
- Tossing a bit into your fruit salad for a light touch of extra sweetness
- Moistening/glazing a pound cake or layer cake with it
- Using it to sweeten a sorbet!
- Adding it to a spicy chicken or fish marinade
Buttttt, once you try a mojito that is sweetened with this minty magic, my bets are that you’ll be making mojitos round the clock and won’t have a single drop left for any other use.
Not sayin’, just sayin’.
So now that you have my TWO pineapple mojito secret weapon recipes in hand — this mint-infused simple syrup and homemade pineapple-infused rum — are you anxiously awaiting the weekend like I am?
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup mint, packed
- Roughly tear or chop mint leaves in half.
- Add sugar, water, and chopped mint to a medium sized saucepan and heat over medium heat, stirring gently and constantly, until all sugar is dissolved.
- Remove the simple syrup mixture from the heat, and allow it to sit and cool for 5 minutes.
- Strain the mint leaves out of the simple syrup and transfer to a sterilized air-tight container.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.