How to Use Mint Leaves

Overview

Many Middle Eastern dishes flavor meats with mint, and mint is commonly used in the west in mixed drinks and desserts. Mint is a simple-to-grow herb that thrives in well-drained soil with partial shade. Mint can make a fragrant ground cover, as it tends to spread rampantly. Harvest your mint leaves throughout the growing season to promote new growth. Add mind to a wide variety of food and drink recipes for an extra pop of flavor.

Step 1

Add three to four crushed mint leaves to a glass of lemonade to cool off in the summer. Combine eight to 10 crushed mint leaves with 2 ounces of lime juice, 2 ounces of dark rum, a teaspoon of sugar and a splash of club soda for a refreshing Cuban mojito.

Step 2

Chop up two to three mint leaves, and place them in the center of a coffee filter along with a sprig of lavender. Twist the coffee filter and tie it off with string. Submerge the coffee filter sachet in a cup of hot water for a warm cup of lavender mint tea.

Step 3

Substitute mint for basil in your favorite pesto recipe and serve alongside lamb. Alternately, combine a quarter cup of chopped mint leaves with a tablespoon of sugar, an eighth cup of white vinegar, and salt and pepper in a food processor. Serve as a traditional mint sauce with Middle Eastern lamb dishes.

Step 4

Garnish desserts and fruit salads with whole, fresh mint springs. The green color accents the deep browns of chocolate and the bright reds and oranges of fresh fruit.

Step 5

Make a mint chutney to serve alongside Indian curries. Add a half cup of cilantro, a half cup of mint leaves, two cloves of garlic, juice from a lime and a quarter cup olive oil to a blender and puree until smooth. Throw in a hot pepper for a spicier version.

Tips and Warnings

  • Grow your mint in containers or an isolated bed to prevent the plants from taking over your garden.

Things You'll Need

  • Mint leaves
  • Lemonade
  • Lime juice
  • 2 ounces dark rum
  • Sugar
  • Club soda
  • Coffee filter
  • Lavender sprig
  • String
  • Tea cup
  • 1/8 cup white vinegar
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

References

  • A Pinch Of: Mint
  • Real Epicurean: Uses for Mint
Keywords: uses for mint, cooking with mint, mint recipes

About this Author

Lydia Stephens began writing professionally in 2009. She has written online for Nile Guides, SheKnows.com and various other Web sites and has been published in "Stringing Magazine" and "Xiamen Wave." Stephens played competitive soccer for 19 years, has been weight lifting since 2007 and enjoys running, biking and sailing. She has a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from the University of Texas.