How To Dehydrate Chocolate Mint *Updated 2021
I found this little starter plant at a New Season’s Market. It intrigued me. The tag said Chocolate Mint? I’ve never heard of a chocolate mint plant. I immediately thought “does it taste like chocolate”? Why is it called chocolate mint? What makes it chocolate? I bought it and took it home. I had to find out.
The first thing I found out about chocolate mint is that it will take over your garden. I made the mistake of planting it with the strawberries. Silly me! I thought a 4-foot long planter would be enough room. Wrong! The branches and stems of the plant grow long and will root if it comes in contact with dirt. With it growing fast it can take over your garden in no time.
It was only a few short weeks before I had my first harvest. After my first harvest, I let it grow back to a couple of inches then I replanted it in its own smaller planter so I can control it a little better.
When harvesting I cut all the vines off and made sure I left 1-2″ from the top of the soil so it could start to grow again. I’m now on my 3rd harvest this year. It grows really fast. My mom calls it the minty weed.
I am glad I bought it. It makes wonderful mint teas and yet it has a slight chocolate flavor but it’s mostly mint. If you add a tiny bit of chocolate extract it boosts the chocolate flavor even more.
Let’s get started dehydrating:
Place on dehydrator trays. I use the mesh screens to keep the leaves from falling through the large gaps in the regular trays.
Dehydrate at 90 – 110F /43C for 18-20 hours. The leaves will be crisp and brittle when dried. I use a NESCO Snack Master Food dehydrator.
Process Checking Dehydrated Food:
Process checking is looking for moisture in the dehydrated food. Looking at the food through the jar you are looking for any signs of moisture or stickiness. Shake the jar to see if it is sticking to the jar.
If you find moisture the next day. Pop back into the dehydrator and check on it every couple of hours.
If you don’t see any moisture by the end of 1-2 weeks it is okay to vacuum seal and store.
Freeze Checking Dehydrated Food
If for some reason you are worried about bacteria in the food you can pasteurize it. This is the process of placing the jar in the freezer for 1-2 weeks. Place the vacuum-sealed jar in the freeze for 1-2 weeks. I’ve only had one jar break in the freezer and it was already cracked when I put it in there.
This will kill most bacteria. The only bacteria it won’t kill are the ones that can survive freezing temperatures. I don’t think there are many of those.
Vacuum Seal for Storage:
Vacuum Seal in a mason jar to keep it freshly dried. I use the vacuum sealer for long-term storage.
How to Dehydrate Chocolate Mintmischyf.com
- Mesh Screen
- 1 Harvest Chocolate Mint Stems
- Wash harvest clippings
- Dry with paper towels or a spinner
- Place on trays with mesh screen
- Dehydrate at 90-110F / 43C for 18-20 hours
- Mint is dry when it crumbles in your hand.
- Remove from stems and place in a jar
- If storing - Process Check for 1-2 weeks
- Vacuum Seal for storage
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***Last Updated Aug 7, 2021
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