23 Jul Herbs
Resident GFFC Foodie Karen Neuman here again with one of my favorite ways to add fresh flavor to my summer dishes without adding virtually ANY calories – HERBS! I keep pots of chives, oregano, basil, thyme, parsley, sage and rosemary growing on my porch near the kitchen all summer long.
One of the most refreshing options is mint. I am fortunate to have a veritable forest of wild mint growing along the tree line behind my house (and happy to share – see me if you want some!), but mint is also very easy to grow in a pot and is really inexpensive to buy (readily available at Meijer, etc.).
I infuse water with mint and lime slices, cook with it, garnish with it, and make cocktails with it. Mint is a versatile herb which adds barely any calories to both sweet and savory dishes. Here are a few of my favorite healthy recipes using fresh mint. Enjoy!
KAREN’S ALMOST FAMOUS SUGAR-FREE “MOJITOS”
1 tub Crystal Light Lemonade mix
2 1/2 c. water
1/2 c. rum
6 mint sprigs
3 c. club soda
6 lime slices
1/2 c. fresh lime juice
Empty contents of drink mix tub into large plastic or glass pitcher. Add water and rum; stir until mix is completely dissolved. Add mint and lime juice. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Stir in club soda. Serve over ice cubes in tall glasses. Add a lime slice to each glass.
NOTE: The longer they sit prior to adding the club soda the better the mint flavor!
WATERMELON, FETA & MINT SALAD
4 c. 1-2″ chunks seedless red &/or yellow watermelon
4 oz. feta cheese, coarsely crumbled
1/4 c. loosely packed fresh mint leaves, torn into rough pieces
2 T. extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
In a large bowl, toss together the watermelon, feta cheese, mint and oil. Season to taste with black pepper. Cover and chill the salad for 2-4 hrs. to blend flavors. Serve with grilled pork, chicken or fish.
1 1/4 c. bulgur (cracked wheat), uncooked
1 1/4 c. boiling water
2 c. diced unpeeled tomato
1 c. peeled, seeded and diced cucumber
3/4 c. chopped fresh parsley
1/2 c. diced yellow bell pepper
1/2 c. sliced green onions
2 T. chopped fresh mint
1/2 t. salt
1/3 c. lemon juice
2 T. olive oil
Combine bulgur and boiling water in large bowl; stir well. Let stand 30 min. or until water is absorbed. Add tomato and remaining ingredients; toss. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
Karen Neuman is most recently a retired caterer. Over the years she has also worked with Trader Joe’s in employee training and recipe development, and wrote restaurant reviews and feature articles for various publications while living in Pittsburgh. She is a wife and mother, travels extensively, and has been a GFFC member for 5 years.