BVC Eats: The Mint Julep made easy

by Jennifer Stevenson

It helps if you grow mint in your yard.  The best mint is the kind with a sharp flavor—peppermint of some kind.  Spearmint is a no-no—your julep will taste like toothpaste.  Wintergreen is just lame.  And no, lemon balm is not a mint—now the julep tastes like Lemon Pledge!  Use peppermint.  I have three kinds in my yard—a native peppermint (sharp and clean), a cultivated peppermint (hardy, fresh, fairly strong), and a chocolate peppermint (supersharp with a chocolatey overtone).

Cut and wash four to six cups of mint plant tops.  Use mostly leaves, although soft upper stems and a few flowers are okay.  Throw this into a blender with half a cup of powdered sugar.  (Regular sugar takes forever to dissolve.)  Add an entire fifth of bourbon.  About any brand will do, but personally I stay away from Jack, which I find harsh.  Blend until the leaves are all shredded and the powdered sugar is dissolved.

Pour all this into a jar or a bowl and refrigerate it, covered, for an hour—no longer—and then strain out the shredded peppermint greens and discard them.

Stuff a few sprigs of mint (with flowers if you like)  stem-first down into the empty bourbon bottle.

Pour the bourbon back into the bourbon bottle.  Hint: It won’t all fit!  You will be forced to drink some.  Also, the juleps will be cloudy and you’ll have a few bits of shredded greens in the bottom.  That’s the part you’ll have to drink.

Refrigerate for a day or so until it’s time to pour the juleps over crushed ice and serve.

By now, you know that a little julep goes a long way.  Give your guests lots of crushed ice and only a little julep, unless you have plenty of couches where they can sleep it off.

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BVC Eats: The Mint Julep made easy — 1 Comment

  1. Oh, so this is a recipe in BULK. This means you have to have a party.
    I had peppermint growing in a contained bed for years, but I think it has gradually lost flavor over time. Is this possible? Of course it is impossible to eradicate, so planting new mint is not on.