Today I’m sharing a recipe that is a great festive drink that combines the best of mine and my husband’s cultures – a Middle Eastern style mint tea with a festive twist! Here I’ve added a little splash of rose water to bring out a kind of harmony in flavours too. Rose water is pretty easy to make yourself – but I’m lazy so I bought mine from the shop!
Besides a pretty sounding name and great scent, rose water in your tea has nutritional value too! It has vitamins A, B, C, and E and is said to be a mood enhancer, which, in the long days of winter sounds like as good a reason as any to add it to your drink.
What I love most about this recipe is how light and refreshing it is, which makes a great difference from the heavy hot chocolates and after dinner brandies that mark this time of year.
- Large Bunch of Fresh Mint
(peppermint if you can get it, but any will do!)
- Splash of Rose Water
- 2 tsp Caster Sugar
- 2 Peppermint Candy Canes
Instructions – – –
To start off, pick your cutest mug (I used a glass one, just so you can really see the pink colours come out), but any works fine since this recipe tastes fantastic!
If you want to be really fancy, take one of your candy canes, and obliterate it till you’re left with a plate of candy cane dust. I like to put my broken candy canes into a sandwich bag, and hit repeatedly with a rolling pin till it looks a little something like this.
Now I’ve tried this recipe a few times, and still haven’t figured the perfect way to get the crushed candy canes to stick to the rim of the glass, but I recommend either putting a little bit of honey on the rim of your mug, or here, I’ve used a little bit of extra sugar melted into hot water to give the glass a syrupy stick. I think it looks really cute, especially if you’re making a warm version for little ones, but feel free to leave this part out if its a hassle!
Heres one I made earlier, with honey around the rim. A little more candy cane dust retention.
Next, grab a generous helping of mint leaves. You’ll want to keep them in your hands and give them a solid slap. This helps extract the natural oils and flavours. I know this because they do this in mojitos, and if its good enough for a mojito, its good enough for us! Pop these mint leaves into your glass. You’ll want to Add 1-2 teaspoons of sugar. I use caster sugar, but again, any sugar, or even using honey will do just great too. Sweet is sweet. Like it less sweet? Less sugar! Thats fine too. To finish off, grab your rose water and add a splash of it. This is my favourite part, and really brings the whole recipe together with that floral, sweet flavour. I used to work in a Lebanese restaurant too, and the owner swore by a dash of rose water in mint tea, so there you go.
Traditionally, when you make Moroccan mint tea, you pour the boiling water from high above the cup. This is said to be a mark of respect for your guests and also the force of the water hitting the mint leaves will again, bring out the rich flavours. However, we’ve slapped our mint leaves and this works just as well, so feel free to pour your hot water from any height you like.
The final step, the ‘pièce de résistance’, the “Oh but sir, this is so much more than a candy cane” moment, is the final touch.
By adding a candy cane, you not only give yourself something to stir your drink with – but, chose the colours well, and the red from the candy cane will slowly turn your drink a soft, misty pink colour with little sprigs of mint to hint at the flavours within.