July 18, 2010

The Joy of Herbs

Grow Your Own Garnish!I may have mentioned that I have a little bit of a herb garden on my deck. I've already made rosemary pesto from one of my pots, and we've have numerous salads from our tiny lettuce garden. Haven't come up with anything yet for the fresh oregano, but I'm sure I will. And it hasn't really produced much yet, either, so I'm content to wait until it does.

The basil plants have recovered from their neglected early days and are now robustly green and healthy, which is all the invitation I need, really. Had some bocconcini in the fridge, so got a few grape tomatoes to go with, chiffonaded some of my lovely basil leaves, drizzled olive oil and balsamic vinegar over top, and seasoned with the trusty ol' S&P. Voila, Caprese salad, after a fashion.

The most impressive plants at the moment, though, are the mint ones. I have one from last year and one from this year (because I forgot about the one from last year), and just in the last week or two the sun has finally come out, it's been hot and summery, and the mint has exploded in joyous celebration. And because they're spearmint, they're perfect for mojitos. So that's what we did tonight. Pitchers of mojitos. I won't post the recipe because the one I followed was for drinks by the glass, so we faked it, and also the internets are groaning under the weight of all the different mojito recipes out there.

They do all have the same basics, though: rum (golden or white), fresh lime juice, sugar syrup, mint, muddled in a glass, topped up with ice and then club soda, and a straw if you're the kind of person who has straws at home.

Yes, you can buy basil and mint - and everything else - at the store, but it's sure nice not to have to.


  1. I want to try your mojitos! I think it's a good use for the mint. My experience with growing mint is that once it takes off...you will never get rid of it. It seeks world (or at least garden) domination! xx

  2. If we ever manage to get together, I'll make us a pitcher of mojitos! I'm getting good at them now. Have identified, for instance, that Bounty Overproof Fiji Rum is NOT the stuff to use to make yummy mojitos; it makes them smell like petrol!

    Mint's tendency to take over is why I have mine in pots. Last year's plant shared with something else, but quickly beat it into submission, and there's not a trace of it left, now.

  3. Rosemary pesto, aye? Sounds great. My fav herb in my garden is rosemary.

  4. I like the rosemary, but I'm a bit more fond of the mint. So useful in refreshing summer beverages!