Monday, October 11, 2010

Homemade Strawberry Mojitos

Sunday afternooon Brentwood farmer's market + another trip to Bevmo for some Goslings black rum (amongst many other things) + fresh mint picked from parent's backyard = delicious strawberry mojitos on the patio on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.  After last week's rain, we've been having a beautiful stretch of warm sunny weather in the mid-70s.  Once again, September and October have proven to be the warmest and best months in Southern California.  We took advantage of the weather and rode our bikes to catch the tail end of the Brentwood's farmer's market to buy fruit.  We went again just as the market was about to close and got some great deals; organic grapes for $1 dollar a lb and 3 baskets of fresh strawberries for $4 dollars.  I know it's towards the end of strawberry season and while these strawberries weren't as sweet as they could be, they were still very juicy and good.  I wanted to test them out straight away and made strawberry mojitos largely based on this recipe.  I love strawberry mojitos; they have always been one of my favorite drinks at Milk and Honey in NYC.  My homemade mojitos were just as tasty; I love the wonderful combination of strawberries and mint.  The simple syrup added just enough sweetness without making the drink too sweet (I hate sweet syrupy cocktails), and the Goslings rum was deep and smooth.  I could drink these all day long.  Plus, the entire bottle of rum plus 3 cartons of strawberries still cost less than 2 drinks at Milk and Honey.  Score!  We grilled some yuzu chicken and portobello mushroom burgers (again) and had dinner on the patio and had strawberries and freshly whipped cream (about 1/4 cup of heavy cream whisked together with 1-2 tsp of powdered sugar in the Kitchenaid stand mixer) for dessert; simply heavenly.

Strawberry Mojito Recipe:
  • Remove the stems and quarter 3 strawberries and chop the leaves of 4 sprigs of mint
  • Combine the strawberries and chopped mint in a tall glass (~12 ounces) with 3/4 shot of simple syrup (to make simple syrup, just boil 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water until the sugar dissolves and let cool)
  • Muddle the strawberries, mint in the syrup with the back of a spoon or a pestle until the strawberries are fully mushed
  • Add 1 shot of rum (most recipes call for white rum, but Goslings dark rum was fine and I think it added even more flavor)
  • Fill the cup with about 1 cup of crush ice and top up with club soda (~1/4-1/2 cup).  Stir it all together and garnish with a strawberry and some sprigs of mint and serve

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