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Old 11-25-2006, 07:46 AM   #1
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Peppermint

I accidentally acquired a peppermint plant about a year ago and it gives no indications of the short life span my other houseplants usually endure.
I assume that "mint" in a recipe means spearmint; correct?
How do you use peppermint?

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Old 11-25-2006, 09:12 AM   #2
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I usually have about 10 mints on the go each summer - everything from Moroccan to apple mint to spearmint to pineapple mint .... I often use a selection of a number of them when adding 'mint' to a dish.
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Old 11-25-2006, 01:47 PM   #3
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I think that the general use for peppermint would be teas/drinks and most cooking uses would be using spearmint but rules are only guidelines.

I'll also bet that your climate is so mild that the mints would be perennial outside there although watch out they will overrun the yard if not kept in check. I grow mine in a pot.
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Old 11-25-2006, 04:01 PM   #4
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I use peppermint and spearmint interchangeably. Largely because I can't be bothered to figure out which is which when I'm out grabbing a hunk of it. Make yourself some tea with it. Its an excellent digestive aid. Works wonders for colicky babies too.
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Old 11-25-2006, 04:50 PM   #5
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As a rule of thumb, use peppermint for sweet dishes (confectionery, desserts, cakes etc). Peppermint goes well with anything 'chocolate' - add some to hot chocolate, or to chocolate cakes etc. Peppermint is the preferred 'after-dinner' mint tea. It goes quite well in fruit drinks, like punches. (Hint: freeze some mint in fruity ice cubes to float on summer drinks.)

Use spearmint for savoury dishes (with lamb and veges, mint sauce, tabouleh, Middle Eastern recipes, meatballs etc). Spearmint goes very well with fruit - fruit salads, strawberries etc and with veges (potatoes, peas, carrots etc). I prefer spearmint in fruit punches (I think it's more refreshing than peppermint, but it's a matter of personal taste.)

I find spearmint far more versatile than peppermint. In fact, I rarely use my peppermint. I do use the chocolate mint, though! It's a derivative of peppermint, great in ice cream or chocolate sauces or added to a biscuit (cookie) recipe!

Peppermint Syrup
3 cups sugar
1 cup water
6 tablespoons chopped peppermint

Dissolve sugar in water and bring to the boil. Add mint and boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, let stand for 30 minutes. Strain and bottle. Use as a base for summer drinks.
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