Strawberry Rhubarb Mojitos
My ole’ enemy humidity came visited Los Angeles this weekend. In his bags, he packed muggy weather and a constant, sticky sweat that lingered in places you never knew could sweat before. I paint a lovely picture, I know.
Even though I’ve lived in extreme dry heat my whole life with temperatures sometimes reaching 120 degrees, I’ve never got a hang of the humidity thing. So, imagine my struggles when my girlfriends and I made grand plans to get our fill of Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman at an outdoor cemetery screening of Casablanca on a Saturday night. The only way I decided I could combat such a heat was with a cool, refreshing mojito.
I’ve been itching to make something with rhubarb ever since I first spotted a beautiful red stalk in the grocery store a few months ago, but wanted to steer clear of generic pie recipes and ones that ask for cups of sugar. While I was looking for some recipe inspiration, I decided to do some research on this striking red vegetable.
Here’s what I learned:
- Rhubarb is a perennial veggie that’s in season from April through August. (I made it just in time. 😉 )
- When you pick rhubarb, only choose stalks that are firm to the touch, crispy and predominantly red.
- Don’t eat the leaves of this tart veggie. They are poisonous.
- Rhubarb is a vitamin and mineral treasure trove. Not only does it contain B-complex vitamins, vitamin A and vitamin K, it boasts of healthy levels of various minerals.
- You probably will burn more calories by sitting on the couch watching The Big Bang Theory than is in a stalk of rhubarb…Okay. Probably not true, but you get the point.
Healthy and tasty!? That’s a winning combination in my book.
Strawberry Rhubarb Mojitos (adapted from The Roasted Root)
Rhubarb Simple Syrup*
1/2 Cup of Fresh Strawberries
3 Sprigs of Fresh Mint Leaves
Rinse and dice strawberries and mint. Set aside. In a glass, mix 4 parts sparkling water, 1.5 parts rhubarb simple syrup and 1 part white rum. Squeeze a half a lime and garnish generously with mint and strawberries. Mix and serve. Makes 1 cocktail.**
*Note: To make rhubarb simple syrup, wash and dice four stalks of rhubarb and place them in a pot with 1/2 cup of agave nectar, 3/4 cup of sugar and 2 cups of water. Boil on low for 20 minutes or until all the sugar dissolves and mixture starts to thicken. Let cool and strain. Makes about 2 cups.
**If you are making more than one cocktail, you can still use the same ratio– 4:1.5:1. I prefer my cocktails to be fresh, so I’m liberal with the lime juice and sparkling water.
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