You could find mint in over 30 varieties including spearmint, peppermint, mountain mint, lemon mint, apple mint and chocolate mint.
Mint leaves are used in teas, beverages, smoothies, cookies, candy, chocolate and ice cream. Mint is also used in mouthwash, breath fresheners, toothpaste and chewing gum.
How to make mint tea
To make fresh mint tea, pick fresh leaves and steep in hot water for ten minutes before drinking. Always use honey to sweeten your tea, do not use sugar! Apart from the great taste you'd like to have after dinner, mint tea is used to stop stomachache and indigestion. It is a digestive tonic that helps prevent vomiting and promotes bile flow, so good in pregnancy. Mint relaxes the peripheral blood vessels, promotes sweating, increases urine flow and cools the internal organs.
I know you use your wheat bags, but mint also is useful as a compress on inflamed joints and painful muscles.
The essential oil of mint is good for bug bites, stings and other itchy skin irritations. The mint oil may also be used as a mosquito repellant.
Mint essential oil is also used in massage for relieving tension
headaches, fevers and menstrual cramps (always dilute with carrier oil before using in massage).
Mint is a fast growing perennial that spreads by underground runners. Mint grows well in pots or other out-of-the-way areas such as along fence lines.
Mints make good companion plants, repelling insect pests and attracting
MInt drink recipe
A few slices of cucumber, a bit of sugar, a few leaves of mint and a blast of soda make a refreshing, homemade soda pop.
There are a few varieties of basil. Sweet basil is a flavour most commonly associated with Italian dishes. It has spicy overtones of aniseed. Basil complements tomatoes, green vegetables, soups, salads, fish, eggs, cheese, lamb, pizza and pasta sauces.
Basil goes very well with fresh mozzarella and tomatoes, drizzled with olive oil, and seasoned with salt and a grind of black pepper. This is a Caprese salad - great in summer when tomatoes are red, jucy and full of flavour! See recipe below.
Back to our basil now- there is also ice cream made with basil - give it a try when you find it, I heard it is very refreshing.
Basil has proven strong antibacterial and antispasmodic properties. In the past it has been used as a remedy for bladder and kidney ailments, and as a remedy for chronic diarrhoea and dysentery.
Sweet basil applied to insect stings or venomous bites is said to draw out poison and reduce itching.
Insalata Caprese is one of the simplest and most delicious of salads. It requires only the right ingredients and the right season. This is basically a summer dish: it should be made only with local vine-ripened tomatoes that are red, juicy and flavorful but not overly soft, and preferably unrefrigerated.
The next ingredient should be truly fragrant, flavorful young basil: green basil grown in the earth and sun. The next essential ingredient is good quality fresh, moist mozzarella. Good fresh cow's milk mozzarella does just as well. Finally, you need genuine extra-virgin olive oil. With a good quality fresh bread and a glass of cool or slightly chilled white wine, this makes an excellent summer lunch or, in a small portion, an ideal first course for a summer meal.
I am passionate about healthy and ecological living, simple and natural things that give pure happiness and children's laughter.