Cinco de Mayo…a day for Mexican folks to display their ethnic pride and for people of all cultures to indulge in mariachi music, mouth-watering Mexican food and strong, tasty margaritas.
As legend would have it, the margarita was invented in 1941 in Ensenada, Mexico by a bartender named Don Carlos Orozco. Orozco was experimenting with mixing new drinks when a prestigious visitor arrived: Margarita Henkel, the daughter of a German ambassador. Don Carlos offered the drink to Margarita and named it after her for being the first person to taste it. So if you can believe Wikipedia (I know…I know…), the margarita was named after a German.
In any event, here are a few recipes for you to try out at home!
First, a classic margarita from the Epicurious website:
- 2 ounces tequila made from 100 percent agave, preferably reposado or blanco
- 1 ounce Cointreau
- 1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
- Salt for garnish
Combine tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice in cocktail shaker filled with ice. Moisten rim of Margarita or other cocktail glass with lime juice or water. Holding glass upside down, dip rim into salt. Shake and strain drink into glass and serve.
Here’s a frozen margarita courtesy of drinksmixer.com:
- 2 tsp coarse salt
- 1 lime wedge
- 3 oz white tequila
- 1 oz triple sec
- 2 oz lime juice
- 1 cup crushed ice
Place salt in a saucer. Rub rim of a cocktail glass with lime wedge and dip glass into salt to coat rim thoroughly, reserve lime. Pour tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and crushed ice into a blender. Blend well at high speed. Pour into a cocktail glass.
Bobby Flay has a cool frozen watermelon margarita that serves eight:
- 5 cups cubed watermelon, seeds removed
- 1/2 cup simple syrup (equal amounts sugar and water, heated until sugar melts), cooled
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
- 2 cups silver tequila
- 4 ounces orange liqueur
- 2 ounces melon liqueur
- Watermelon wedges, for garnish
Place watermelon in a food processor and process until smooth. Pour the pureed watermelon into two empty ice cube trays and freeze until firm, at least four hours. Place martini glasses in the freezer to chill.
Place two cups of the watermelon ice cubes and the remaining ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into four glasses and repeat with the remaining ingredients. Garnish each glass with a watermelon wedge.
A low-cal version comes from Cooking Light magazine. (To be honest, it looks like it’s just a really small drink, but you can always have two and still feel good about yourself.)
- 1 ounce premium or silver tequila
- 1/2 ounce Cointreau or other orange-flavored liqueur
- 1.5 oz. fresh-squeezed lime juice
Combine ingredients. Shake with 3/4 cup ice; garnish with lime.
And for folks who don’t drink alcohol, here’s a Virgin Margarita recipe for four from lovetoknow.com.
- 1 6-ounce can frozen limeade concentrate, thawed
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1/2 lime, cut into 4 equal size wedges
- 4 cups ice cubes
Moisten the rim of the serving glasses with a little lime juice. Put the salt in a huge saucer or shallow pie pan. Invert each glass in the salt, and gently twist to coat the rim with salt. Invert each glass in the salt, and gently twist to coat the rim. Place the limeade concentrate, orange juice and ice cubes in a blender. Pour into glasses and be careful not to disturb the salt on the rims. Garnish the drinks with lime wedges and serve.
And finally, if you love both mojitos and margaritas and are waffling over which one to have, try a Mojarita for four, courtesy of iVillage:
- 20 fresh mint leaves, more for garnish
- 8 oz. tequila
- 2 oz. fresh lime juice
- 2 oz. agave nectar
- 4 oz. soda water to top
- 2 limes, cut into wedges
In a cocktail shaker, add torn mint leaves, lime wedges, lime juice, and muddle together allowing the flavors to marry and the aromas to release. Add two cups crushed ice and tequila. Shake well. Pour evenly into four glasses, adding additional crushed ice on top and mixing well. Top with soda water. Garnish with mint sprigs.
But if you’re lazy, like me, come to the North Square lounge and have the bartender mix you up a strawberry basil margarita with jimador tequila, lime juice, strawberries and basil. Estaba delicioso!
Cheers! And enjoy the weekend, everyone!