Hold onto your hats – the Kentucky Derby is this Saturday! Whether you watch to hail the horses, follow the fashionable hats or simply as an excuse to enjoy a mint julep, you’re not alone. The two-minute race is attended by 150-thousand people and watched by more than 14 million people worldwide. So, stock up on mint for the race’s traditional mint julep and save a sprig or two for household use. Did you know that mint is good for more than juleps?
Rodent Repellent - There are a number of ways you can use mint to reduce rodent invasions. One approach is to place a few potted mint plants in your kitchen. You’ll enjoy the smell just as much as mice detest it. To learn more, read: Mint: Good For Mojitos and Mouse Prevention.
Stovetop Potpourri - In a large pot combine water and fresh mint sprigs. The amount of spice is up to you – an extra handful of mint means a more potent aroma! Bring your concoction to a boil, and then let it simmer on low for at least two hours. Your home will be perfumed with the scent of mint.
Get Rid of Moths – To repel moths, take two handfuls of fresh mint leaves and let them dry in the sun. Once they’re dry, place the leaves in small bags like these paper tea bags and place them in rooms where you have a moth problem.
Air Freshener – In a plastic spray bottle, combine one ounce of vodka with fresh mint sprigs. Add water to the mixture until the spray bottle is full, and thoroughly shake the bottle. Let the mixture sit for at least 24 hours in a cool place before you use it.
Impress your friends on Saturday by making this classic recipe from our friends at Esquire Magazine:
Five or Six Mint Leaves
1 tsp. Sugar
3 oz. Bourbon (Makers Mark and Woodford are good options. Grab Breckenridge Bourbon if you want to try something from BrightNest’s backyard.)
Place five or six leaves of mint in the bottom of a dry 12-ounce glass or silver beaker. Add sugar and crush slightly with a muddler. Pack glass with finely cracked ice. Pour a generous 3 ounces of Kentucky bourbon over the ice. Stir briskly until the glass frosts. Add more ice and stir again before serving. Stick a few sprigs of mint into the ice so that the partaker will get the aroma.
1) Don’t over muddle the mint. The harder you grind, the more bitter flavors come out.
2) Smack the mint you use for garnish in your hands. It will express the oils and bring the flavors out.
3) Pre-chill your glass before you make your drink.