Mojitos with Cuban rum

8 08 2008

Well, it’s les vacances, and I’ve been secretly posting all week from Sofia, Bulgaria.  (Actually, I wrote it all on Monday, and set it up to post throughout the week.  How cool is that?)  Nick’s had this guest post brewing for a little while now, and what better time to post about Mojitos than the hottest month of the year?  So sit back, relax, and enjoy the dulcet tones of Nick’s prose.

There’s an herb guy at the Joinville market (Thursdays & Sundays, bring your elbows and wear closed-toed shoes). We’re sure he has a proper name, but we call him “the herb guy.” He runs his stand on a corner and is often only barely visible behind green mountains of fresh parsley, cilantro, and mint. On a recent (and finally sunny) trip to the market the waft of mint was irresistible. We had cilantro, rosemary, and parsley on the shopping list, so we decided to pick up some mint to go along for the ride. Two bunches in fact. Why the splurge? Because it looked fresh, smelled great, and the things are thirty cents a bunch. Treat yourself, right?

Herb Guy

The other motivation for the mint was that I’ve had my eye some Cuban rum lately. This is one of those items you can find in France that you can’t find in the US. Cigars, too, but this is a food blog and I’ll stay on subject.

Rum comes from the Caribbean, and as an outsider it is interesting to note the origins of the rum imported into France. I will admit that, in general, rum is not high on my list of libations. However, in The States most rum I know of comes from Puerto Rico. In France one can find rum from the DOM-TOM’s Martinique and Guadeloupe as well as from Cuba. In other words, each country imports their rum from their respective Caribbean territories/departments, and then Cuba in the absence of any long-standing embargoes. As well, there are three to four different brands of Cuban rum at a given grocery store. So, political ramifications notwithstanding, we grabbed a mid-priced bottle of forbidden-fruit Havana Club añejo 3 años Cuban rum.

Havana Club Rum

The rum itself was very good. The flavor was simply that of distilled, fermented sugar cane juice. A slightly warm punch at the beginning, certainly mellowed over those 3 años, with a residual sweetness you can only get from pure cane sugar. Really nice with a cube of ice,  but it begs to be turned into a cocktail.

 mojito components

My food recipes are usually less than precise, and my drink recipes are even less exacting. So here goes: I took a chilled glass, added some sugar and juiced half a lime on top. I picked a bunch of mint leaves and put them on top of the sugar and lime juice, and muddled that with the back end of a wooden spoon (my muddler is in a box somewhere). I then added my desired amount of rum and a handful of ice, and topped it all of that off with some Perrier (it’s still France, and we’ve yet to find that art deco seltzer bottle at the flea market), stirring gently to maintain the fizz.

mojito

In a word, the Mojito with Cuban rum was great. Like a mint perfumed effervescent adult limeade. An incredibly refreshing treat on a hot day. We each had two.

Originally published on Croque-Camille.

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6 responses

8 08 2008
dish

Luv the “herb guy”. Oh, how I dream of finding someone like him in Sweden. In the states, no problem. But here, just a bit more of a challenge. We love mojitos and served them as one of our signature drinks at our wedding in Spain – it just seemed fitting in the hot weather. We even used Havana Club rum you mention. Sounds delightful right now. Is it too early for one? =)

8 08 2008
Cathy - wheresmydamnanswer

That would hit the spot now as outside here in California it is over 100 outside. Mojitos are such a great, refreshing and totally addicting drink :)

9 08 2008
Jody

LOVE IT….I have been on a mojito kick for a few months now…for some reason!!!
thanks for the loverly photos!!!

10 08 2008
croquecamille

Glad you like the guest-post and the photos. Our muddler usually gets pulled from hibernation for Kentucky Derby mint juleps, a slightly heavier drink for before the real heat arrives. But once it warms up it’s mojito season. It’s never too early for either. -N

12 08 2008
Hopie

Nick’s prose can serenade me any day! Especially when talking about Cuban rum and mojitos ;-) Geez, I gotta get myself back to France!

13 08 2008
Tiffany

Mmmmm. Mojitos… That sounds like the most delicious thing on the planet to me right now. Miss ya’ll!




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