I’ve had this very lovely and beautiful mint plant in my side yard all summer long. Despite the demise of my spinach and lettuce plants turning into wilted leaves of sadness, my mint plant was thriving beyond its leafy neighbors. I spent weekends trying to figure out what the heck I was going to do with all this mint (besides for drinking mojitos with every meal and snack). Mint ice cream? Um, ok if you make me. Mint extract? Pour some vodka on those leaves and call it a day.
Dreams of never ending mint recipes were on my mind. Mint cocktail hours involving sipping chilled, refreshing libations on the patio with a book or a kind friend, pondering who would receive the next yield of mint that I just couldn’t use up fast enough. But then, the incident happened that would crush my minty goodness dreams.
While my guy and I were gone for a lovely weekend away, the weather turned to rain and wind, which we desperately needed to cool off from the crazy heat we had been enduring. While we were away, the wind blew down my window box plantings and crushed my lovely herb plants and snapped the life out of my (finally producing!) pepper plants. But wait, could I just pick the box up, dust it off, and hope my sprouts would repair themselves? Guh, sadly no. My parsley plant is still thriving, but my poor mint has continued to wilt away and protests to my efforts in coaxing it back to life. In an effort to use the last of the good mint leaves left, I wanted to incorporate it into something fresh and light, where the bruised leaves wouldn’t be noticed but the flavor would lend an unmistakable hint of the remaining mint leaves.
I know that you might think I am insane for mourning the loss of a stinking plant, but if you’ve been through the trials of trying to finally grow a proper garden with an actual abundance of leaves, you hear my words, right? Please tell me I’m not just a big weirdo about this herb disaster!
So even though your mint plant might seem like the herpes of herbs and it feels like it might never go away or be used up (um sorry, best analogy that popped into my head), just remember, you can find me in the produce aisle, weeping over the $4 packets of weeks old herbs or trying to coax a baby mint plant into supersizing itself before the first chills of fall. Bring me your fresh mint and we will be mojito friends for life, on the real.
Sweet Cherry Mint Fruit Salad
- 1/2 cantaloupe cubed
- 1 1/2 cups strawberries diced
- 1/3 cup cherries I used Ranier cherries, but feel free to use any other variety
- 1 cup grapes halved
- juice of 1 lime
- 1-2 ounces Luxardo Cherry liqueur or any other sweet liqueur
- 1/3 cup mint leaves chopped
In a medium bowl, combine fruits, lime juice, and liquer. Stirring to evenly combine. Add mint leaves and stir to combine throughout. Serve immediately or chill in fridge for 2-4 hours. The flavor tends to get better after the salad sits for a couple of hours, allowing the flavors to meld together.