I wanted to take this chance to show off an awesome gift I received. Is it neurotic of me to be so excited about a mortar and pestle? Because well, I am. There’s just something therapeutic about the rustic technique of grinding your own food with cold stone dug from the earth and allowing the aroma of whatever it is you’re crushing to take over you. I adore my handy dandy food processor, don’t get me wrong, but using a mortar and pestle allows you to connect with your food on a whole other level.
To break in this fine gift, I’ve chosen to make one of my and Jonah’s favorite cocktails, mojitos. To jazz this minty citrusy cocktail up, I’m going to be adding a little twist (metaphoric twist) by adding lychee berries and strawberries. You’ll have a hard time finding lychee berries fresh, so I’m using canned lychees preserved in syrup. You can find this in any Asian market in the canned fruit section.
20-30 mint leaves
1 tsp sugar
1 20 oz can of lychee berries
4 cups club soda or lemon lime soda
1 1/2 cup strawberry nectar(Kern’s or Jumex Brand)
4 oz rum (8 oz if you’re feeling real boozy)
Bust out your mortar and pestle, add in the mint and sugar, and go to town! Beat the leaves to release the aromatics, but not too much that they look like a pile of bruised green slop, or something that looks like it crawled out of a nickelodeon game show. Transport the mint into a pitcher, add in ice, squeeze in the juices of 3 limes, pour in the can of lychee berries along with the syrup, add in strawberry halves, pour in soda and rum. Mix all together, pour into glass, and garnish with a lime wedge and sprig of mint. Drink responsibly, all you alkies out there!