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From Garden To Glass: 5 Herbs For Your Cocktail Garden + Book Giveaway

March 27th, 2013

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Spring is upon us, which means gentle, crisp breezes, sun-kissed flowers, and early evenings on the porch are all just around the corner. A Mint Julep or Cucumber Cooler in hand can only make spring that much sweeter, no? If you’re growing herbs in your garden this season, consider adding cocktail ready herbs and citrus to the mix. Imagine a freshly shaken cocktail ready in minutes, and all within reach of your own backyard.

***Would you like to learn more about the plants behind your favorite boozy beverages? Check out our giveaway details below! Entering is as simple as throwing a lime in your favorite margarita.

Basil – If you enjoy adding fresh Basil leaves to your pizzas and pastas, then perhaps adding these fragrant leaves to your cocktail is a logical next step?  Muddled basil leaves  add a nice Italian twist to a traditional martini,  adds flavor to hard lemonades, and compliments most cocktails with a tomato base.

Growing Tip: Basil loves warm weather. Plant this herb when temperatures remain in the 70’s or warmer, and keep these plants well protected from frost.

Cilantro – If you haven’t added fresh sprigs of cilantro to your martini– run, don’t walk! Even Bond would appreciate the invigorating flavors of cilantro the next time you serve up a martini, shaken, and not stirred. Cilantro also adds a zesty flavor to Cucumber Coolers, or try freezing cilantro in ice for a frozen margarita. Get inspired with these flavorful cilantro cocktails ideas over at Organic Authority.

Growing Tip: Cilantro plants do not transfer well, and should be started from seed whenever possible.

Lavender – Cocktails made with sprigs of lavender is the latest chic trend at dinner parties. The fragrant, purple flowers on lavender are perfect for stirring a martini, or adding an intriguing flavor to lemon drinks – like hard lemonades or Lemon Drops.  Are we the only one’s eager to try this lavender infused simple syrup?

Growing tip: Lavender is extremely drought resistant and grows best in well-drained soil and in full sun.

Lime – these flavor packed green fruit are perfect for margaritas, but also taste wonderful squeezed in Bloody Mary’s, or added to many vodka drinks. Plus, the best Cuban Mojito’s are not only made with mint leaves, sugar, and rum – but also a wedge of lime that gets muddled with the other ingredients. Try any one of these 10 Lime Cocktails at your next dinner party.

Growing Tip: This fruit tree prefers to grow in tropical or semitropical climates – however, this plant will also grow in cooler, drier climates with a little extra work.

Mint – On a warm weekend afternoon, adding a cool touch to your favorite hard lemonade recipe, a fresh mojito or mint julep can be very invigorating. Simply adding it as a fragrant garnish to other cocktails just screams, “Spring is here!”

Growing Tip: Grow this herb in a container to keep it from taking over your garden, as this herb is notorious for spreading very quickly.

And if you’re growing sage in your cocktail garden… we love this cocktail  recipe using muddled fresh sage leaves, bourbon, and Benedictine (an herbal liquor). Benedictine and bourbon bring out the flavor of muddled sage, while verjus (a tart unfermented grape juice) adds a bit of acidity.

Sage Advice 

(From Drinks.SeriousEats.com)

7 sage leaves, plus one for garnish
½ oz verjus
dash simple syrup
2 ounces Jim Beam bourbon
½ oz Benedictine
dash bitters
In a cocktail shaker, muddle 7 sage leaves with verjus and simple syrup. Fill with ice, then add Jim Beam, Benedictine, and bitters. Shake well, then strain into an ice-filled glass. Garnish with additional sage leaf.

Giveaway details: The Drunken Botanist, written by Amy Stewart explores the extraordinary, lesser known, and sometimes bizarre plants behind your favorite boozy drinks. This book will not only make you the most interesting guest at the next cocktail party – it’s also packed full of recipes using fresh herbs, fruits, and vegetables.

To enter this giveaway: Eager to win this book for free? Leave a comment below, and tell us your favorite fruit, vegetable, and/or herb you enjoy in your cocktails. We will select a winner at random in one week from today (4/3/2013). Good luck!

About Us:

Humble Seed specializes in premium garden seed kits that are packaged and themed for convenience and ease.  We are dedicated to providing the highest quality heirloom, non-GMO, non-hybrid, and organic seed varieties to those who choose to start from seed.

 

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14 Responses to “From Garden To Glass: 5 Herbs For Your Cocktail Garden + Book Giveaway”

  1. Justine says:

    Rosemary & grapefruit! A passionate love story :-)

  2. heather says:

    ~I stir my Hendricks on the rocks with a tortured sprig of Rosemary .

    ~I have 2 bottles of Quervo 1800
    1.) has a Tablespoon of crushed cumin seeds
    2.) has sage & tyme leaves
    Add a shot of either to selter & a squeeze of lime.
    Either compliment savory mid-Eastern meal!

  3. Dr. Leisa says:

    Thank you for sharing these wonderful ideas! We serve rosemary-cucumber water in our office in the Summer. For parties, rosemary and cucumbers are great flavors to add to gin too!

  4. Angela Ellis says:

    yummmmm mojitos. The best one I have tasted was in Antiqua Guatemala. Their mint is a bit different..very intense and very good.. and of course lime. Must say the lavendar martini is nice, too.

  5. Seth T. says:

    Fresh mint and basil from the garden for a yummy mojito

  6. James Mahanna says:

    Mint, it has many uses in many drinks and foods, and it literally grows like a weed :)

  7. Deb says:

    Grapefruit. Chamomile. Perfection.

  8. Sarah says:

    Mint for summer mocktails , so refreshing. A sprig says spring.

  9. Lia Totty says:

    I LOVE mint mojitos! I grow spearmint organically in my local community garden plot in the NW DC area. After trying a mint mojito for the first time this year, I fell in AMOUR! I love the spearmint-lime combination, and can’t wait to try making my own. Last year was my first year gardening in a plot, and I also grew opal, genovese, and thai basil among other plants!

  10. Jackie Perrin says:

    As an avid organic gardener, I love & appreciate all the wonderful suggestions in this article. Here’s my favorite concoction, which I make after dinner, for my guests:

    NEOPOLITAN MARTINI (Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla)

    1 shot Absolut Vanilla Vodka
    1 shot Godiva Chocolate Liqueur
    1 shot Creme de Cacao
    1 shot Organic Half & Half
    Whole Strawberries, tops intact, fresh from the garden
    White Chocolate, melted
    Dark Chocolate, melted

    Pour the 3 shots over ice…shake, don’t stir =)
    Add Half & Half, shake gently
    Pour into chilled Martini glasses
    Add pre-prepared Strawberries to rim of glasses
    Toast…Drink…Repeat

    STRAWBERRIES:

    Pick fresh strawberries, leaving tops & stems intact. Rinse & gently pat dry. Slice from the pointed tip, up about half way to top, so it will sit nicely on the rim of the glass. Melt chocolates in microwave (I use little condiment bowls). Dip strawberries in chocolates, half in white ~ half in dark, using however much you choose. Place them on a dish and put them in the fridge, until serving time. Make drinks, slip a yummy strawberry onto the rim, place glasses on a serving tray, and let your guests choose white or dark. Enjoy!

    **Note: Chocolate Liqueur & Creme de Cacao sound and taste quite innocent…but this 3~Shot Martini packs a punch! There are other “Neopolitans” out there, but they all have added ingredients that don’t seem to fit the mix…IMHO. My Inner~Mixologist created this drink, to suit my own personal taste. Salud!

  11. CJ says:

    Lemon twist is a great drink. We add citrus slices to any of our vodka or rum drinks for an added freshness – of course from our local trees :) fresh picked… yummy

  12. Sabre says:

    I grow Mint (wildly) for my Mojitos… Strawberries for my frozen daquiris…

  13. Thank you all for the great cocktail tips and recipes! Congrats to Dr. Leisa for winning the drawing.

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