Early summer is when our mint is at its best, and there’s a whole lot of it:
Usually we don’t do all that much with it: throw it in a few salads, and ... well, that’s about it. Kirk wants to make mint ice cream, but we haven’t ever gotten around to that. He’s the only one who would eat it.
Anyway, I was on the hunt for a refreshing drink with dinner the other night and was pleased to recall that, in addition to a garden full of mint, we had a bottle of homemade limoncello just chilling in the fridge:
It was much fuller at the beginning of the week, and now I barely have any left, but that’s because I believe I’ve found its higher calling: a drink I’m calling Sunshine Spritzers. So light and refreshing, sweet but not too syrupy. It’s perfect for July.
This homemade limoncello was a gift from my friend Betsy, who was kind enough to share her not-so-secret recipe for this. It will last forever (ok, I can vouch for two years) in the fridge, and it’s a lot like making Cherry Bounce. Steep and wait.
And it is well worth that wait, because then you make this:
5-6 mint leaves (a nice, mild spearmint will do)
3 oz. limoncello
1 lemon wedge
a handful of crushed ice
5-6 oz. plain seltzer
Muddle the mint in the bottom of the glass and leave it there (I recently had a weird mojito in which the mint was inexplicably removed by the bartender, which is why I mention it). Add the limoncello and a squeeze of lemon, and drop that in too. A handful of crushed ice comes next. Top it all off with seltzer.
This is really good with food, especially a light salad or something from the grill when wine seems like too much. I mean, it’s fizzy! It’s lemony! It’s my new summer drink.