They say a watched pot never boils. Well, a watched plant doesn’t grow, either. Every morning (noon, afternoon, and evening, if I can manage it), I am out inspecting the herb garden. Generally, things are growing remarkably well – new green growth, a few blue, pink and white flowers scattered around. But that darn mint only deigned to show a bit of green just above the soil a short time ago – the laggard in the garden. I keep it restricted to a large trough-like pot, so maybe it is rebelling a little over its confinement, or perhaps it caught me looking, and refused to grow.
Then, I relax my vigilance for a couple of days and suddenly the pot of mint is beginning to brim with minty freshness!
Here in Britain mint is essential in making up seasonal pitchers of Pimm’s – that fruity (lethal) alcohol-based punch mixed with sprigs of mint, slices of cucumber, strawberries, lemon and orange, and other fruity things. With the mint finally perking up in the herb garden, I can now indulge, not only in a cup of Pimm’s, but in one of my favorite summer salad dressings – distinctly packed with fresh mint.
Mint Balsamic Dressing
A very versatile dressing!
- 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup mint leaves (chopped, loosely packed) – a small handful
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
Place all the ingredients in a blender.
Process until the dressing emulsified.
Drizzle on pan fried or grilled vegetables, cubes of feta or slices of mozzarella di bufala, or on a simple tomato or green salad. Any dressing not used right away, seal in a jar and keep refrigerated. To use again, bring back to room temperature and shake before pouring.