by Malia Kirby L.Ac.
It’s May! The weather is getting warmer, we’ve planted our garden, and we’re just starting to hit our prime season for hanging out on the deck, feet propped up on the railing, and sipping on an adult beverage surrounded by friends. Conveniently, Cinco de Mayo falls upon a Saturday this year, so I figure it’s prime time to talk tequila, and specifically, the margarita. Admittedly, I’m not a huge fan of mixed drinks—I’m really more of a pint of beer or a glass of wine kind of gal—but I’ve been told that when it comes to the margarita, that I make a mean one. There’s a trick to it, and like the rest of everything else in the kitchen, it’s all about your proportional ratios, and this one’s a no-brainer. Observe:
1 part 100% agave blanco tequila : 1 part orange liqueur : 1 part lime juice : 1 part whatever
Simply pour your ingredients over an ice-filled shaker, cap, and shake for 15-20 seconds, strain, and pour. Voila! It’s easy.
“Wait a minute,” I hear you saying. “What’s this ‘whatever’ in your ratio?” Well, that’s anything you might want it to be. Let’s say your blackberries and mint are taking over your garden and you’re looking for ways to use them up. If you’re making one (large) margarita for yourself, you’d plug in:
2 oz tequila : 2 oz orange liqueur : 2 oz lime juice : 2 oz fresh blackberries + a few mint leaves
Here, since you’re adding fresh fruits & herbs, you’ll want to add them to the shaker and muddle them first, then add your ice, then pour in the remaining ingredients, shake, strain, and pour.
So…what if you’re a fan of salt on the rim? Me, I’m not. I figure that if you can taste the salt in anything you’ve already used too much, so I personally choose to avoid using it. But, hey, it’s your drink, so whatever floats your boat. Just rim your glass with lime, then dip the rim in a shallow bowl filled with kosher salt.
What if you prefer frozen strawberry margaritas over those on the rocks? Same ratio, although I would caution against trying to make more than two at a time, otherwise, you will have a thin slushie that will knock you flat on your butt. Or, maybe that’s what you’re looking for. If that’s the case, don’t let me stop you. If it isn’t, fill your blender with ice, then plug in the ratio for two large margaritas:
4 oz tequila : 4 oz orange liqueur : 4 oz lime juice : 4 oz strawberries
Blend until frothy, then pour. Garnish with fresh mint or a slice of lime if you’re feeling fancy.
Your drink isn’t sweet enough for you? I recommend adding light agave nectar to taste in order to keep in line with the agave flavoring in the tequila.
Malia’s Classic Margarita
Makes 1 very large margarita, one which I usually split with Shawn
2 oz Espolon blanco tequila
2 oz Grand Marnier
2 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
2 oz apple juice (Yes, I know. Just try it. It blends well without smothering flavors.)
Fill a shaker with ice, then pour all four ingredients over the ice. Cap the shaker, then strain into a serving glass. Serve immediately.
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