I know gin and tonics are all the rage right now… Seriously, all the cool kids are doing it. And, I want to like them. But, I’m really just not into gin. Or tonic.
Sadly, I don’t think I’ll be sitting at the popular table in the cafeteria any time soon… Though, I’m hoping I can bribe my way in with some of this ginger mint syrup.
I’ve always been a fan of mojitos. My taste for alcohol bloomed a while after I was in college (yes, I know… I’m not helping my reputation any by telling you this), and one of the things that won me over was a frozen mojito. Since then, I have become a fan of cocktails (as long as they aren’t too sweet…), especially those made with rum, vodka, and tequila. In that order.
Of course, when I was pregnant, I had to give up mojitos for a while… I don’t drink much soda, but I allowed myself an occasional ginger ale when we were dining out so that I felt like I was drinking something special. Enter Founding Farmers in Washington DC (which, I highly recommend, by the way… even though I don’t really do restaurant reviews). The hubby and I were there last spring and I was doing my best to order pregnant-friendly foods. They were kind enough to cook my steak well done and recommend a few other items on the menu. And, they also made me a fresh ginger ale “cocktail”, virgin of course. It was one of the best things I have ever had.
I’ve been thinking about that fresh ginger ale ever since. In fact, I have contemplated driving down to DC just to go eat at Founding Farmers and order another one. Since packing up the baby for a 3 hour car ride isn’t my idea of fun (not to mention the mood she’d be in by the time we actually got to the restaurant), I decided to make a version of my own at home.
Instead of simply making fresh ginger ale, I opted to make a ginger mint syrup. It’s good for ginger ale (add sparkling water), iced tea (can I tell you how awesome it is with iced passion tea?), and for the non-pregnant, mojitos (just add rum and a good squeeze of lime). I like versatile recipes.
So, here it is… My oh-so-simple ginger mint syrup. It’s great for getting rid of a bunch of mint that is taking over your garden. And, I’m hoping I can bribe my way into the good graces of all of the gin-lovers out there.
Ginger Mint Syrup
(Makes about 2 1/2 cups)
- 1 cup raw turbinado sugar
- 1 cup coconut palm sugar
- 4 ounces of peeled and sliced ginger
- 1 cup packed mint leaves (and a few tender stems are OK)
- 2 cups water
Combine all ingredients except in a small saucepan. Stir together with a wooden spoon, muddling everything a bit. Add the water to the saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat.
Simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and let cool. Use a fine mesh strainer to strain out the ginger and mint. Transfer to an airtight bottle and keep in the refrigerator for a week or two (if it lasts that long). Enjoy in your favorite beverages!