I know so many people who love fresh lemons. Lemon juice, lemon rice, lemon rasam, lemon tart, lemon soup, lemon cake – whats not to love about something that is so fresh, summery, fragrant and delicious?! At this point I must confess that I am not a lemon person at all. I like lemon flavor but I don’t love it. In fact even after growing up in a home with lemon tree in the backyard, I didn’t appreciate what beautiful flavor lemon is all about.
Everyone at home raves about fresh lemon juice but not me. I have hardly made/tried lemon juice at home and have politely said no when offered elsewhere. I didn’t know what I was missing until I made lemon juice myself recently. Ok, not lemon juice per se but Lemon Mojito. There certainly is some magic in combining fresh lemons with mint, which is Mojito essentially is.
I had a good number of home grown lemons from our last trip to Chennai and I had to put them to a good use. Last weekend I was particularly in the mood for something cold and decided to surprise the husband with a nice Lemon Mojito. As I went ahead, I added ingredients that I had in my pantry so this might not be the most traditional Mojito recipe but can assure you that it tastes the best!
What I used –
- Fresh Lemon Juice, 2 tbsp
- Fresh Mint Leaves, a handful/15-20 leaves
- Thin Lemon Slices, 4
- Sugar, 3-4 tsp
- Salt, a generous pinch
- Chaat Masala, ½ tsp
- Water/Soda, 2 cups
- Ice Cubes, few (optional)
How I made –
- In a mortar & pestle, add mint leaves along with the lemon wedges and ½ tsp sugar and crush until the juices are released.
- In a bowl, add the crushed mint leaves, lemon juice, sugar, salt, water/soda along with chaat masala and mix well. Check for the sweetness and add sugar if required. Filter out the mint leaves.
- Pour into serving glasses and drop some crushed mint leaves along with lemon slices. Add ice cubes. Decorate with a lemon slice and fresh mint leaves on the side.
- Serve immediately.
- Instead of sugar, honey can be used.
- Adjust quantity of sugar as per preference. If you like tangy mojito, use only 2 tsp or for a sweeter version, use 4 tsp of sugar.
- Basil leaves can also be used instead of mint leaves.
- I didn’t use ice cubes but served it chilled.
- I filtered out the crushed mint leaves and added just a few on top as I didn’t want them to muddle the mojito. Alternatively, add all the ingredients except water to the mortar-pestle and add then add the crushed mint-lemon mixture into serving glasses and then add the water/soda directly.