Happy Cinco de Mayo! 🇲🇽🇲🇽
As a general rule, Americans aren’t usually celebrating the correct thing when we get excited about Cinco de Mayo. Rumor has it that most Americans think this day is Mexico’s Independence Day, which it is not. Instead Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican victory over France at the Battle of Puebla. But hey… any excuse for delicious Mexican food. Or drink!
When we decided to make homemade margaritas tonight, Ally immediately thought about the margaritas our favorite Texans make for us. Texans know authentic Mexican better than anyone else in the country who is not Mexican, so we got their recipe – see Texas Margarita below. Since we were talking about tequila and margaritas, Selim had to share his personal recipe as well! Two margarita varieties in one post!
Notice the color of our margaritas, an appealing greenish-brown. Since we hand squeezed (yes, by hand, no electric or plastic juicer, just muscle) the limes, they keep their pale green hue instead of the neon green from marg mixes. Plus, we don’t use traditional white sugar in any of our cooking endeavors, instead we keep turbinado sugar in our pantry at all times, which is a clear brown in color and has way more depth of flavor.
Selim loves tequila (it comes in 2nd after wine, obviously). There are three “kinds” of tequila: joven, reposado, and añejo. Joven means young in Spanish and is often referred to as silver or white tequila. Joven is unaged and is really just the distillate from the agave; think of it being similar to the white grain alcohol before it’s aged in barrels and becomes whiskey. Reposado means rested and this tequila has been aged a minimum of 2 months in oak barrels. Añejo means aged and this tequila has been aged a minimum of 12 months in oak barrels. Barrel aging imparts complexity by adding notes of vanilla, cinnamon & spices, caramel, toffee, and so much more depending on oak type (American or European), new or old barrels, duration of aging, and of course… terroir! For those who have written off tequila as some inferior liquor, think again. To get back to the initial sentence, Selim loving tequila… He likes to highlight the tequila in his drinks, that’s why his pseudo-margarita only has three ingredients. Simply made, yet complex in taste. Always good tequila (we like Espolón), fresh squeezed lime juice, and local (terrior!) honey. Enjoy!
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 4+ limes ⇒ 1/2 cup lime juice + 1 strip of peel
- 1/4 cup orange liqueur
- 1/2 cup tequila
- Coarse salt, if desired
- Prepare simple syrup. Over low-medium heat, stir together the sugar and water. Watching closely, after the sugar dissolves, add the strip of lime peel. As soon as bubbles appear, remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- (You can make a larger batch of simple syrup if desired to keep in the fridge for later use. Just maintain 1:1 ratio.)
- Prepare drinks once simple syrup has cooled. Mix together 1/4 cup simple syrup, lime juice, tequila, and orange liqueur. Shake or stir to combine.
- Salt the rim of two glasses if desired. Pour drink into glasses over ice.
Makes 2 drinks
- 4+ limes ⇒ 1/2 cup lime juice
- 1/2 cup tequila
- 1.5 oz (~1/6 cup) honey
- Vigorously stir tequila into honey – it’s thick.
- Add tequila-honey mix to cold shaker with lime juice and shake.
- Divide into two chilled coupes glasses. Serve!