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4010 Mt Diablo Blvd.
Lafayette, CA, 94549

Located in the Bay Area, CA, we're a family-owned garden center offering unusual and hard-to-find plants & gifts. Established 1946.

Mint

MINT

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SPEARMINT & PEPPERMINT

Different species: Spearmint is Mentha spicata while peppermint is Mentha piperita.

Peppermint's flavor is marked by the ingredient menthol, which is stronger and more pronounced. Both spearmint and peppermint have menthol in them but peppermint has a much higher menthol content.

 (40% mentol in peppermint versus .05% in spearmint)

An interesting fact is that menthol imparts a “cool” sensation when we taste it, or a cold feeling on our skin when we rub peppermint-scented oil. Menthol activates sensory receptors that are interpreted as a cold feeling, although there’s no actual temperature changes in our mouth or skin!

Spearmint’s  flavor comes from the chemical ingredient, carvone, that gives it that sweet, familiar flavor.

Peppermint is utilized mainly for the mentholated essential oils that can be extracted from its leaves. The fresh herb can be used as well in a variety of raw preparations. Muddle peppermint leaves and use to infuse a minty flavor into whipped cream, gelato, custards and popsicles. Add leaves to cocktails, soda water, tea and hot cocoa for a minty kick. Chop leaves and add to green, grain and fruit salads. Its flavor pairs well with berries, citrus, sweetened creams and chocolates.

BLACK Peruvian Mint

The leaves of Black Peruvian mint are thin and dark with pronounced ridges and a slightly purple tinge in color. The flavor of Black Peruvian mint is noticeably sharper than most garden-variety mints. Its taste and aroma is a mixture of basil, tarragon, mint and lime. Black Peruvian mint is used as a condiment in stews, soups and Peruvian ajis. It can be used to make herb marinades for poultry, lamb and seafood. Black Peruvian mint’s cool clean quality is especially useful in chilled desserts that demand a sharp effervescent quality. Black Peruvian mint's flowers and leaves produce a strong odor as it contains an essential oil called Huacatay oil. The Huacatay oil is used to make herbaceous and floral perfumes.

Black Peruvian mint is used as a condiment in stews, soups and Peruvian ajis. It can be used to make herb marinades for poultry, lamb and seafood. Black Peruvian mint’s cool clean quality is especially useful in chilled desserts that demand a sharp effervescent quality. Black Peruvian mint's flowers and leaves produce a strong odor as it contains an essential oil called Huacatay oil. The Huacatay oil is used to make herbaceous and floral perfumes. In Mexico, Black Peruvian mint is used medicinally in the form of teas for the treatment of common colds. Black Peruvian mint with its very aromatic leaves are ground into a paste and used to flavor many Peruvian Andean dishes. Huacatay paste is used in the popular Peruvian potato dish called Ocopa. In many places Black Peruvian mint is considered a weed. 

 

ON THE BLOG...

 

INCORPORATING EDIBLE FLOWERS INTO YOUR CULINARY CREATIONS

Edible flowers may be used culinarily in a variety of ways. They make colorful, striking garnishes for drinks as well as food, for everything from salads to soups and desserts.

 

HERBS YOU CAN GROW IN YOUR KITCHEN

Growing fresh herbs in your kitchen is not only more fun, it makes them convenient to use and adds beauty to your home to boot! 

SHOW-STOPPING SPRING HERBS 

Here are a few of our show-stoppers that you’ll want to be sure not to miss next time you are browsing our herb section!