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Mulling Over the Mint Sampler

The lovely mint comes in multiple varieties—each coming with its own unique flavor nuances and appearances on the plate and in the glass. Here are three ways that Chef Jamie Simpson uses the sweet flavor and refreshing mouth sensations of mint.


At the Bar: Mint Margarita


Tequila. Lime. Coconut.


When you work in the bar and the cocktail at hand calls for mint, do you ever wonder which variety of mint to use for a particular beverage? Or the best part of the mint plant to use? There are more than 7,000 varieties of plants in the mint family, so you’ll want to choose wisely. Fortunately, the mint sampler from The Chef’s Garden contains best of the day varieties, allowing you to experiment.


Fine Dining:

This dish relies upon just a few ingredients that, in combination, create a meal to remember. Flatbread. Yogurt. Mint Sampler. Olive Oil. Green Pepper. Olives.


Country Club Dining: Lamb Shank


Looking beyond mint jelly, mint in Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Morocco cuisines has made an appearance with lamb for many centuries. That’s likely because the rich gamey profile works well with fresh, bright, and clean contrasts. There’s also a seasonal importance to consider here. Mint is one of the first perennial herbs to make its appearance in the spring—just in time for lamb season.


More About Mint


As you use the mint sampler in your own dishes and drinks, you may find that a particular variety of mint grabs your attention. If so, no problem! Available varieties include:


  • Black mint: offers up a pungent aroma and flavor with a crunchy and succulent texture

  • Chocolate mint: has a strong minty taste, plus a presence or bouquet of chocolate, and a crunchy and succulent texture

  • English mint: provides the enticing flavor and aroma of fresh spearmint with delightfully crunchy texture

  • Mountain mint: offers up strong flavor—that of peppermint and menthol—with a satisfying crunch

  • Nepitella mint: pairs well with mushroom dishes or green vegetables, and with beef or lamb entrees (but you’re only limited by your imagination!)

  • Pineapple mint: adds unique flavor to dishes and menus: sweet and tropical

  • Orange mint: adds delicious layers of flavor to dishes and menus with notes of citrus and spice and lavender undertones

  • Penny royal mint: provides a strong and pungent flavor to culinary dishes and menus with a crunchy texture


We hope you enjoyed this installment of plating food techniques!



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