Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Best (Blood Orange) Margarita

With Easter just about over, I'm already thinking about the next couple of holidays coming up. Cinco de Mayo is a week from Thursday, and I've been thinking about where I'll welcome the end of the work day with a refreshing margarita. Soon thereafter is the Kentucky Derby, on Saturday the 7th, followed by Mother's Day on the 8th... What are your spring holiday plans? (Does your liver ache just thinking about this?)

With the taste of spring and summer that we had today, I'm in full Cinco de Mayo swing, thinking about everything Mexican. Just last week I made some flank steak tacos (recipe to follow). Of course, they must be served with margaritas and guacamole!

To kick off a week of Cinco de Mayo planning, I'm sharing some of my favorite Mexican recipes that are so easy to make and even better to eat. What to start with? A salt-rimmed, cold margarita. I've adapted the classic lime with a bit of blood orange juice for a slightly sweeter, and brightly colored alternative. And guacamole, of course. I'm also thinking of a cool and refreshing tuna seviche. But you'll have to wait and come back for that. I promise it will be worth it!

This recipe is derived from my dad’s amazing margaritas. During the summer, he’s the margarita-maker. I don’t know what he does, but I can never seem to recreate the slightly-tart, slightly-sweet, and oh-so-easy-to-drink cocktail he creates. Here, I sub half the lime juice for blood orange juice. Just remember: The key to the recipe is equal parts juice to triple sec to tequila.

I’ve dabbled with using both triple sec and Grand Marnier in the drink. I find a smoother taste comes from using good-quality triple sec (not the $5 stuff in the grocery store). And NEVER use anything but fresh lime juice — preferably from room temperature limes.

This recipe calls for serving the margarita up, but you can also serve it over rocks. A salt rim is up to you... But forgetting the Chunky Guacamole with chips is a crime.

Blood Orange Margarita
Adapted from The Daily Meal

Juice of 2 limes (about 1/4 cup juice)
Juice of 2 blood oranges (about 1/4 cup juice)
1/2 cup triple sec
1/2 cup Tequila, preferably 100% agave
1 lime, cut into 4 wedges
Salt, for rimming

In a shaker, combine the juice, triple sec, and tequila. Add ice and shake well. Set aside.
Coat the rims of 4 martini glasses with lime and rim with salt. Pour in margarita base and serve.

Serves 4
Total time: 10 minutes

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