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Peppermint sugar

Botanical name:
Preparations:

The making of peppermint sugar.

In my garden, I grow Mentha x piperita 'Mitcham', the best of all peppermint cultivars, the one with the most menthol in it.

From July or so onwards I've picked branches of peppermint and hung'em up in bundles; the leaf went into a jar about 10 days after I'd hung it up to dry.

That's 3 liters of dried peppermint leaf in one big glass jar. It's crushed, in order to fit more in. While this might sound like a lot it won't last me through spring; you need a lot of peppermint for peppermint fudge, and I also use it to make teas tastier.

Cut up the stalks left after you've stripped the leaves off your dried peppermints. Use them in syrups.

'Mitcham' has a very strong taste. My inferior peppermint cultivar doesn't get picked, as it's, well, inferior. Not very strong.

Dried peppermint leaf sugar

2 parts (by weight) of dried peppermint leaf
1 part (by weight) of sugar

Blend. Store for a while before use. Note, your sugar won't be white and innocent-looking, it'll be green, because you can't get all the leaf out of the sugar -- nor do you want to.

Fresh peppermint sugar

You can also use fresh peppermint, but then you have to use a completely different approach: the water in the fresh herb will make your sugar'n'leaf into a sticky inconvenient mess. You'll need to dry it before you can use it.

Chop leaf up in whatever ways you like, add sugar, mix. Or blend, if you want to. Pour onto cookie sheet, let dry in oven on about 50-60 deg. C for an hour or three (I've forgotten the details, it's been a while since I've made peppermint sugar this way), or air dry on a cookie sheet on a table (protected against flies) for a few days.

Your fresh herb sugar will be lumpy. Crush it up, or blend it, pour it into a glass jar, label.

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What to use peppermint sugar for? Try making black currant jam or rhubarb pie or soup with it, try using it in your normal baking and cooking, or try adding it to your otherwise bland tea. Yum!

Comments

Ooh... very spiffy idea. I've definitely got to plant some peppermint next year. Maybe I'll even have enough to do something fun next year.



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