Watts (chipotle) wrote,

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The moderately perfect mojito

This is a Cuban rum drink; when I had it at Cuban restaurants in Florida was sweetened with cane syrup and served with a spear of sugar cane. I've been attempting to figure out how to replicate something close to the best mojitos I've had, albeit without the frou-frou garnish. The recipe on Webtender is good, but it's not quite there -- and I've always suspected it's because it's just calling for sugar rather than cane syrup. But I haven't found cane syrup anywhere, and somehow, Karo doesn't seem like it'd cut it. So, on my third attempt, I figured I'd improvise.

And it was a marked improvement, if I do say so. The trick is that you need to make a simple syrup with unrefined sugar--and you can't skip using a cocktail shaker. (You can use a canning jar as a substitute, but you'll need something to put over it as a strainer.)

2 oz silver rum
1 oz key lime juice (or the juice of one fresh lime)
1 tbsp  unrefined sugar
1 tbsp  hot water
2–3 fresh mint sprigs (about 8–12 leaves)
 club soda

Mix the hot water and the sugar together well to form a simple syrup. (With unrefined sugar, this will have an amber color.) Put the mint sprigs and some ice into a cocktail shaker, and add the sugar syrup, the rum, and lime juice. Shake vigorously--you should be able to smell the mint. Strain into a highball glass filled halfway up with ice, then fill the glass up the rest of the way with club soda. If you're feeling sufficiently motivated, garnish it with a couple mint leaves and/or a lime wedge.

I'm using Captain Morgan's silver spiced rum -- it's actually the only light rum I have on hand. It works great. The key lime juice came about for the prosaic reason that four ounces of normal lime juice was $1.99 and 16 ounces of Nellie's key lime juice was $2.99, and Nellie's is pretty good stuff. (I bought it when I wanted to explore mojito-making, but I've also made a key lime pie.)

As a footnote, I may consider reducing it to just two teaspoons of sugar/water, because as it stands now it may be a little too easy to drink. Whee! (A "real" simple syrup is actually 1 part water to 2 parts sugar, so if you do that, maybe you should start with a half a tablespoon and see how it works.)


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