One of the easiest and most refreshing homemade syrups: mint syrup with fresh mint from my garden and lots of lemon juice.
I do like making syrup from time to time, proof are these wonderful Addictive and Refreshing Elderflower Sirup or this Simple and Aromatic Rhubarb Peel Sirup. We use it not only for drinking it plain with water and ice cubes, but also for soaking and flavoring cake bases, for adding to cake fillings or for making cocktails or long drinks.
And OK, I had to google to find out the difference between a cocktail and a long drink and in case you are interested a cocktail is a mix made out of at least two alcoholic drinks + something else, while a long drink is an alcoholic drink (can be a large cocktail too), which has to contain at least 140 ml and up to 250 ml liquid. Very important to know!!! 🙂 🙂
And because I am in inquisitive mood this morning I googled the difference between syrup and sirup again. I did that a few years ago while writing the post for the Elderflower Sirup, but I had forgotten what I had learned so I searched for it again. So in this case I would have to call this Mint Sirup a “sirup” and not a “syrup” because a “sirup” is a thick and viscid liquid made from the juice of fruit, herbs etc boiled with sugar, while “syrup” is any thick liquid that is added or poured over food, like maple syrup for instance. (Source: WikiDiff).
BUT – after doing a google search for a sirup recipe, I found close to nothing, everybody likes to call it a syrup and not a sirup, even though syrup would be false on this occasion. So I let it be with syrup as well, if that is what people are searching for, I will have to go with it, I don’t want anybody to miss this wonderful mint sirup just because of the spelling.
So! Here you have it! Not that anybody says you cannot learn anything when reading food blogs!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂
So back to our Simple and Delicious Fresh Mint Sirup with Lemons, with lots of lemons, I might add. I love making it! It is so easy and the result is soooo good and it is somehow so satisfying being able to do something so delicious with so few ingredients. Just fresh mint that seems to be growing like weed in my garden, sugar and quite a few lemons.
Otherwise, wash the herbs, squeeze the lemons, pour some boiling water over the mixture and let stand for about 2 days. Then, add the sugar, let it dissolve, pour the syrup into clean bottles and that’s it! Enjoy with cold sparkling or tap water and some ice cubes on a hot summer day. Or pour a bit into a glass of sparkling wine or white wine. Or mix some with gin and sparkling water. Or mix some into your (mint) tea. Or pour over ice cream or waffles or pancakes.
But although I enjoy some of these mixtures myself sometimes, I have to admit that it is mostly my husband or the kids, who drink the syrup with water or other mixes. The main reason I make it is for soaking cake bases I use when making fondant covered cakes or any other kind of stapled cakes actually. Although most cakes work just as they are and you don’t necessarily need any extra moisture, I do prefer a cake base which is slightly moist and more so when making fondant covered cakes, I feel that a cake covered in fondant tends to be drier than the same cake left naked, so to say.
So, I started pouring homemade sirup on most of the cakes I make nowadays, either mint or elderflower or rhubarb sirup, these are the three syrups I tend to have in the cellar most of the times. I usually go for mint syrup when making chocolate cakes, I turn to elderflower when needing a lighter aromatic flavor for cakes filled with buttercream or whipped cream and use rhubarb for most cakes containing fruit. But there are no rules here, actually, use whatever suits your taste.
- 2 large handful picked fresh mint leaves
- 5 large lemons (or 6-7 smaller ones)
- 1 liter/ 4 ¼ cups water
- 1250 g/ 44 oz/ 5.5 cups granulated sugar
Place the clean mint leaves in a large heatproof glass bowl. Squeeze the lemons, remove the seeds and give the lemon juice to the mint in the bowl.
Bring the water to a boil (in an electric kettle) and pour the boiling water over the leaves. Cover the bowl with a cloth and let stand for 48 hours.
Strain the liquid through a fine sieve and discard the mint leaves. Give the liquid back to the bowl and add the sugar. Mix well and let the sugar dissolve slowly. I leave it for a few more hours and stir from time to time, eventually the sugar will dissolve.
Pour the syrup into sterilized, small bottles and seal well. It is important to seal the bottles very well, (with twist off lids for instance) or fill the syrup into jars that can be sealed well.
When well sealed, it keeps for quite a long time in the cellar or another dark cool place.
Enjoy with water and ice cubes or in any of the variations mentioned above.
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