A record-breaking heat wave is expected for my part of the world this weekend, which, I digress to say, is nothing like a heat wave in Phoenix where it is too hot for even planes to escape.
Still, it’s warm and lovely. The ocean is as blue as the sky, and I spent $7 on mojito mint.
As anyone with half a garden knows, mint grows like chickweed or dandelions. Once you get it started there’s just no stopping it. You throw it into salads, soups, and teas, and dig it up for your neighbours, and still it thrives.
But when your garden of free mint is a few hours away and you’re hit with a summertime hankering for mojitos, you will gladly pay $7 for mint that is also labeled organic, as if you cared at this point.
Apparently the mojito has been around in some form since at least the 16th century when Francis Drake happened on Cuba. It’s said to be one of the – if not THE – most popular cocktails in the world, so I don’t know why I first heard of it when my daughter returned from the Caribbean and reported that 1. she was pregnant and 2. had she known she would have abstained from mojitos. (The baby, happily, could not have been more perfect).
Since having become acquainted with mojitos, Mr. WI64 and I strive to sample offerings on menus in new locales.
The best, by a mile, was in the bar of an historic Port Townsend nunnery-turned-hotel; the worst at a bar in Victoria, that had to scramble for a couple of pathetic mint leaves.
I’ve neither the temperament nor attention span for complicated instructions and the thing about mojitos is, they’re dead easy. As easy as my almost-as-good-as-it-gets baguette in which you dump the ingredients in a bowl, mix and let rise.
On the off-chance that you’re not already well into a pitcher of mojitos of your own making this weekend, here’s how to make the most refreshing and summery of summer drinks:
Mojito for one
A fistful of mint leaves (10, 12, more – don’t scrimp)
½ a lime – quartered
2 oz white rum
2 full tsp fine sugar
2.5-3 oz soda or mineral water
Spank that fistful of mint leaves. It helps open the flavor.
Put the mint leaves, lime, rum and sugar in your glass and using a muddler (if you have one) or spoon (if you don’t) muddle the combination until the lime is juiced and the sugar dissolved. Spend 30 seconds or more on this activity. Add your soda, give a little stir, add ice, taste and swoon.
It’s that easy and that good.
And I can vouch that it’s not half bad with that baguette.