This week when I chatted with Matt Swaim on the Sonrise Morning Show, Sacred Heart Radio, we talked about mint. It was used as a tithing herb during Bible days!
Here’s a familiar passage: Luke 11:42 “But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.”
How was mint used in cooking during Bible days?
Mint was valued for its fresh aroma and often used to flavor meat, grains and of course, salads like Tabouleh. Also an important “strewing” herb, mint stems were hung in doorways and thrown on dirt floors.
I also use mint in just about any green salad and, of course, teas, drinks and on fruits to heighten their flavor and give it more sweetness. Mint is a great sugar substitute.
You’ll feel like you are at a trendy spa when sipping this refreshing drink. The flavor makes you want to drink up so you’ll stay hydrated and healthy. THE ONLY THINGS YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS ARE MINT AND LEMONS. The rest of ingredients are optional. Lemon is a gentle liver cleanser and mint helps with digestion and contains vitamin C.
I always tweak this a bit – here’s the latest version:
Handful fresh peppermint leaves
1 lemon thinly sliced
1 lime thinly sliced
1 quart water
Sliced fruit, mint leaves, and/or edible flowers (optional)
Sweetener (I like stevia but sugar, honey, agave, etc. are all good – or no sweetener!)
Place mint leaves in a 2-quart pitcher, gently bruising the leaves with a wooden spoon to release volatile oils. Add lemon and lime slices. Add water; stir. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Stir in the berries. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for up to 6 hours.
To serve, strain Spa Water into a pitcher; discard fruit. If desired, add additional fresh fruit, mint leaves, and/or edible flowers to the pitcher. Serve over ice. Pass sweetener.
ROASTED POTATOES WITH FRESH HERB LEMON PESTO
1 cup fresh parsley
1/2 cup fresh chives or green onions
1/2 cup fresh basil
1/4 cup fresh mint
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary
1/4 cup olive oil plus 2 tablespoons
3 cloves garlic, minced or more to taste
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
2 1/2 pounds fingerling or red-skinned new potatoes, halved lengthwise
Preheat oven to 400. Spray or brush baking pan with a litte oil.
Puree herbs, 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon and salt and pepper together. If necessary add a bit more oive oil. Taste and see.
Place potatoes in bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil.
Put in single layer, cut side down, on sprayed baking pan and roast until golden brown and tender, about 40 minutes.
Place in bowl, add pesto and toss to coat.