Tag Archives: mint

Spring Has Sprung

Spring has definitely arrived here in Washington, DC.  The cherry blossoms are in full bloom and the tourist season has begun.

So, we’ve been staying home a bit more than usual.  After a couple of days of yard work, I was so pleased to see my herbs start to sprout and spread.  I’ve missed the light and fresh taste the herbs can bring to our meals.

I know it is a bit early for sugar snap peas, but my husband couldn’t resist them at the grocery store this week, and I decided they would make a lovely spring dish with the addition of some of our backyard mint.

Blistered Sugar Snap Peas with Mint
Serves 4 to 6

Modified from Food & Wine

2 1/2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
2 pounds sugar snap peas, rinsed and dried
1 Tbsp lemon zest
1/4 cup finely chopped mint leaves

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.

Put a large cast iron skillet on the stovetop over high heat until very hot. Add about 1 Tbsp of olive oil and swirl to coat pan. Add snap peas, toss a few times to coat with oil and transfer skillet to oven.

Cook for about 2 minutes, then stir/toss snap peas a few times to ensure even cooking.  Return the skillet to the oven for another 2 to 4 minutes until the peas are crisp-tender and starting to blister.

While the snap peas are in the oven, combine remaining 1 1/2 Tbsp of olive oil with lemon zest.

Remove skillet from oven.  Toss the peas with the lemon zest olive oil.  Transfer to a serving dish.  Sprinkle mint on top, toss again, and serve.

This dish is good served immediately when hot, or you can let it cool and refrigerate to serve later.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vegetarian

Bar Stool Fridays – Herbal Limeade

This post is due to the influence of two remarkable women in my life.  One, is my sister-in-law Sarah, who gently and without prejudice, pointed out to me that not all of my readers enjoy alcohol quite as much as I apparently do.  Point taken and appreciated, thank you.

The other is my amazing friend Wendy who is one of my biggest champions and always pushes me to be more creative.  Wendy has decided to start presenting me with random ingredients and in Iron Chef style makes firm suggestions of what kind of dish I should make.  In this first example she offered me freshly picked Thai basil and demanded, I mean requested, I make a drink with it.

Okay, ladies, I hope you like the results.  This post is for you.  Thanks for the ongoing support.

Thai Basil and Mint Limeade
Makes about 24 oz

1/2 cup basil and mint infused simple syrup
zest of 1 lime
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
2 cups water or club soda
Thai basil sprigs for garnish

To make herbal infused simple syrup, combine equal parts of water and granulated sugar in a saucepan.  Heat on stovetop and stir until sugar dissolves.  Turn off heat and drop in sprigs of Thai basil and mint (about 1 to 2 oz) into the hot syrup.

Let the herbs steep until the syrup has cooled to room temperature.  Remove herbs.  Add lime zest.

Measure and pour syrup into pitcher.  Add an equal amount of fresh lime juice, and stir.  If you like it a little sweeter, add only half the amount of lime juice.

Now add water or club soda.  I added twice as much water as juice and syrup, but you may prefer a slightly weaker taste and may want to add more water.

Serve over ice with a sprig of Thai basil or mint for garnish.

5 Comments

Filed under Cocktails