Monday, November 24, 2014

DIY Peppermint Extract

About two months ago, I began my first batch of peppermint extract.  Every winter, I enjoy making peppermint marshmallows, peppermint mochas, and other pepperminty things.  I also like to make homemade gifts.  I figured this would be perfect for stocking my cabinets with pepperminty goodness, and for giving as gifts.  

Making your own extracts in incredibly easy.  For the peppermint extract, I bought a huge bottle of Vodka from Costco (under $20).  I then picked peppermint leaves from my front yard.  

So here's how you do it:

You'll need vodka and peppermint leaves.  That's it!

(Your extract will be dark like this ^^ after 4-6 weeks)

Wash leaves, remove stems, and dry them off with a towel.  

Fill a jar with leaves and vodka.  It's important that the vodka fully covers the leaves, or the leaves will get yucky/moldy.  I filled my jars about 1/4-1/3 full of leaves.

Place an airtight lid on your jar, and place the jar in a dark cabinet. 

Every week or so, I would give the jar a quick shake.  

After about 4-6 weeks, the extract should be dark in color (like in my pictures).  

(The really tall jar in the above picture is actually my vanilla extract getting started)

Strain off the leaves, and pour your extract into small containers (or just leave it in a big one if it's all for you!).

Voila!  An easy, frugal, and useful Christmas gift.

I bought little jars at Hobby Lobby for 50% off, so they were about $1.25 a piece.  I'm going to be giving sets of extracts away at Christmas-the peppermint extract, and a vanilla extract, which got started a little later (I used bourbon and vanilla beans for that).

Merry Christmas!

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