Homemade Crème de Menthe

I recently got my mitts on my Mom’s recipe file to pilfer for interesting recipes that match my seasonal food focus and for any family treasures.  We are fortunate to have handwritten recipe cards back to my Great Grandmother which has proven to be a gift revealed to have access to favorites passed down via the dining tables (and cocktail glasses) of multiple generations.  We’ve pieced together decades of food-related memories for our family and our friends who have taken part in various relatives, kitchen exploits.
You might expect when going through a mother’s recipe file that you’d find a favorite family apple pie recipe, maybe the old faithful lasagna well remembered from one’s youth, or a favorite holiday cookie recipe.  Apples don’t fall far from the tree my friends so I suspect it would not shock you that in addition to the family culinary nostalgia I found a number of DIY liqueur recipes.   Quelle surprise.
When I found a recipe for Crème de Menthe (mint liqueur) I was thrilled.  With Grasshopper Pie being in new rotation and the mint-i-ness of the season setting in, this seemed a fun concoction perfectly timed.  Most importantly I’m pleased to report, it’s good!  In a head to head taste test, it beat out the store purchased bottle of Crème de Menthe.  The color is the same, the depth of mint identical but it’s a smidge smoother than the purchased Crème de Menthe.   It takes mere minutes to assemble and has a whopping 5 ingredients.   What a perfect time to whip up a batch for entertaining, gifts or just for your own enjoyment!
CRÈME DE MENTHE
Makes:  10-11 cups
·         8 cups water
·         8 cups sugar
·         1 pint 190 proof grain alcohol (I used Everclear brand)
·         3 tablespoons peppermint extract
·         1 tablespoon green food coloring
1.       Combine the sugar and water.  Heat until the sugar dissolved (happens quickly; no need to boil it), stirring frequently to hasten the process.  Allow to cool.
2.      Once cool add the grain alcohol, peppermint extract and green coloring.
Now that you have it, what can you do with it?
Grasshopper Cocktail
Essentially a chocolate mint cocktail!
·         1 part Crème de Menthe
·         1 part Crème de Cacao
·         1 part cream
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with crushed ice.  Shake and pour into a martini glass. (Tip: for the bright green color, use clear or light Crème de Cacao.  The darker version will still be delicious but the color of the drink is more like drab spinach….not so appetizing).
A Grasshopper cocktail and shots of Crème de Menthe in edible candy cane shot ‘glasses’

 

  Grasshopper Pie: a vintage frozen pie recipe with a crème de menthe whipped filling  (click here for recipe)
Over vanilla ice cream
I actually combined 2 parts Crème de Menthe and 1 part cream as a cocktail which was great.I did not finish it so poured that into some coffee which was also fabulous.

Comments

  1. says

    seriously, that's it?! I need to make some of this asap! What a great hostess or holiday gift :) Congrats on top 9 and thank you for sharing a family recipe with us!

  2. says

    My mother-in-law turned me on to grasshoppers and I've loved them every since. I've never had a grasshopper pie, but it has to be fabulous. I love your creme de menthe recipe! Everyclear – it's been awhile since I've bought that. :)

  3. says

    Linda Vich: Brilliant idea about witholding some of the creme de menthe and leaving it uncolored. Would give a different flexibility for the color!

    Becky, Lizzy, Meaghan, Erin, RavieNomNom: Thanks for the FoodBuzz congrats! Such a great surprise.

    Lidian: I am big on experimenting on things like this however I think the mixture with vodka would taste differently. Everclear has no taste so you really get the true Creme de Menthe flavor. Having said that I think if you can find a fairly tasteless vodka it would be worth a try and who knows you may invent something totally different and fantastic! Do let me know if you give it a go would you? Great tip on the shot glasses too; thanks. Will keep my eye out!

    mjskit: Me too on the 'when was the last time you thought of Everclear'! If you like the flavor of the Grasshopper cocktail you'll love the pie! It's not booze at all; more like a light ice cream pie. Addictive, completely!

  4. Lidian says

    Could you use vodka in place of the Everclear? I've used vodka as a base for other homemade liqueurs, so I'm thinking maybe you could.

    I love those candy cane shot glasses – I've seen a lesser version in the dollar store (loonie store to us here in Canada)that were in different colors…

  5. says

    *Dribbles* Send me one over! I have a fab recipe for this: melt a bar of dark chocolate and let it cool down slightly, mix in as much creme de menthe as you dare and about a tablespoon of demerara sugar. Don't let the sugar dissolve. Cover a tray with cling film and pour the chocolate onto the tray. Let it set and then break it into bite sized, crunchy (adult) mint chocolates!

  6. says

    Oooh! I have a recipe coming up with creme de menth. I WISH I had made this first. I can't imagine how much you cherish those handwritten recipes handed down. I would love to have something like that. I am working to create a file for my family now. (PS, totally snagged me some of those little shot glasses too!).

    • says

      Alcohol does not go ‘bad’ as with a perishable food Brianna. I’ve confirmed that with some distillers as well. The flavor may become more subtle over a long period of time but should be fine indefinitely if stored in a cool, dark spot!

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