Some of Gizmo’s favorite activites involve helping me in the kitchen so I try to find things she can help with. I was going to make mint tea the other day and it dawned on me that she might have fun helping me and she really did.
We grow mint in our backyard and this works out great for us because mint is one of our favorite teas. Our meaning Gizmo’s and mine- Goblin king and the kid never touch the stuff. Clearly, they do not know what they are missing because its delicious.
First we looked for leaves that were not yellow or full of gaping caterpillar holes and snipped them off with safety scissors. (Usually I’d just pull them off with my hands but we discovered that Giz is a little eager and tends to pull the plants up by the root-scissors helped.)
Once we had a big bunch, about two kid sized bundles or one full momma bundle of the stuff, we went inside to wash the leaves.
I got Gizmo a stool and let her rinse the leaves under cold water, making sure to get rid of any dirt or ants that might be lingering.
I put the pan on our stove and Gizmo watched until the water began to boil. I didn’t realize she’d want to stay there until this happened but she did, which means I stayed next to her until it did. (You know that saying about how watched water takes longer to boil? It’s absolutely true. )
Once the water began to boil we waited til it turned a nice green color and then I removed it from the stove.( If your little is like my little you will have to ask her to get away from the stove at least three times before you even attempt to do this. In fact you will have to ask her to go stand by the refrigerator and count magnets just so you are certain that she or he is nowhere near the stove when you are not. )
I removed the leaves with a slotted spoon and then poured the tea into our cups. I let Gizmo add the milk and then the sugar and stir each cup which she got a huge kick out of. Once the tea was deemed cool enough we had a spur of the moment tea party, which is pretty much mandatory if you are four and being asked to drink slightly warmish tea in pretty glass tea cups.(Or so I’m told.)
You can also make this without milk, chill it and drink it like you would iced tea which is the way Gizmo prefers it.
What I really love about mint tea:
I’m a die-hard mint tea with milk drinker because that’s the way my mom always made it for us. She’d call it yerba buena and give it to us when we had tummy aches or when we couldn’t sleep. I didn’t even know it as mint tea until I grew up and actually paid attention to how she made it. Our mint plants come from the ones she’s grown in her yard since as long as I can remember. Which is pretty awesome, at least to me.:)
Do your littles like to help in the kitchen too? I’m still on the look out for things we can make together on a regular basis!