Tonight we celebrated the first of three end-of-the-school-year events. In our family we all follow the academic calendar, but have slightly different start and end dates. Today was Brian's last day. We're on a warm and sunny streak of weather (please stay around!!) so it seemed fitting to make a batch of mojitos. (OK...to be honest we were desiring these over the weekend but discovered we were out of rum. The liquor store --yes, there's just one!-- is closed on Sundays and holidays, so we had to wait....)
I never really know how to make good mixed drinks. Thankfully there's google. I googled "killer mojito recipe" and found this promising recipe. I liked that this blogger had been trying and tweaking different recipes and finally came up with what she thinks is a killer mojito. So I printed out the recipe and did what I could with it. If you look closely at her recipe and what I made below, you will see there are differences. Hers calls for some ingredients I didn't have on hand, and well, I'd already sent Brian to the store twice!! I do want to try hers sometime, as I appreciate someone who has played around and tweaked things to his/her liking.
So tonight we invited some friends over for an impromtu happy hour, which turned into a potluck feast of leftovers. (You know you have good friends when they're willing to eat your leftovers!) Before getting to the food, we set out all the ingredients on the patio table and got to muddling and mixing. Here is what we did:
Prepare ahead: Simple Syrup
In a small saucepan mix heat until sugar is disolved:
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
When the sugar is dissolved, add one cup of mint leaves. Leave the leaves in the syrup for 30 minutes. Strain the syrup, and then refrigerate. This simple syrup should be enough for 8 glasses of mojitos. You can save and refrigerate any leftover syrup to use another time.
Crush some ice (if desired...cubes work too!)
Making the mojitos:
To make one mojito in a 12 ounce glass:
Pour in 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of the simple syrup and 6-12 mint leaves (I did 12).
Muddle* with a blunt instrument.
Add several ice cubes or crushed ice and muddle a bit more.
Add 1 1/2 - 2 ounces of rum, 1 ounce of freshly squeezed lime juice (about 1/2 a lime) and stir vigorously.
Top off the glass with club soda and garnish with a sprig of peppermint.
Taste and adjust as needed.
*The idea of muddling is to press and bruise the peppermint, releasing the essential oils.
Do you have a killer mojito recipe? I'd love to hear what you do!