Fresh mint, whether plucked from your own herb garden or purchased from the market, wins hands-down in flavor, aroma and versatility over its dried counterpart. You can sprinkle fresh mint liberally in green salads, add it to iced or herbal tea, chop it and sprinkle it over vanilla ice cream or use it to flavor a succulent pork roast. Fresh mint is best used as close to its harvest date as possible, but the leaves will last for several days when stored properly.
Rinse any debris off the mint stems and leaves.
Slightly dampen a paper towel. Squeeze out any excess water; the towel shouldn't be soggy.
Untie the mint bunch so the leaves have a little room to breathe. Keeping the stems and inner leaves crushed together could cause spoilage to occur quicker.
Lay the leaves on one end of the paper towel and gently wrap the towel around them to cover.
Place the wrapped mint leaves into a plastic bag. Don't seal the bag tightly, allow some air to circulate so the leaves don't begin to rot.
Place the bag in the fridge. You can store fresh mint leaves in this fashion for three to four days.
Nikki Jardin began freelance writing in 2009 and focuses on food and travel articles. She has been a professional cook and caterer for more than 20 years. She holds a degree in environmental science from Humboldt State University.