Cinco de Mayo Margaritas!

It would really be a shame if you only made these margaritas today. I am hoping that you will enjoy them all weekend long. Heck, all summer long and then perhaps into fall. Or maybe for Christmas Eve. This will be your new favorite marg recipe for sure. I like to think of myself as somewhat of a marg connesiour of sorts. Not that there is a licensing committe that has relegated this honor upon me or anything, but let’s just say that the margarita and I? We have been around the block a few times. That block has gotten progressively  blurry a few times, but that doesn’t matter, does it?

Now if you are still using that awful pre-made mix to which you just add tequila? Or even worse,  the ones with the tequila already mixed in? You need to move into the new milennium. Really people, those are packed with sugar and artificial colors and flavors. Not that I mind those things when I am eating an Oreo, mind you. But for the love of all that is good….take a few steps and make it a bit more fresh. You won’t regret it! Here’s what you need to get people hanging from the chandeliers make this recipe!

1 Container of Minutemaid Limeade (found in the freezer section of most grocery stores, and not the itty bitty ones)

Tequila (not the Jose Hornitos kind, either)

Triple Sec

2 fresh limes

Gran Marinier (this will set you back a few but lasts forever and is fully responsible for the awesomeness of this drink)

Salt (optional)

Okay. Salt the rim of your glasses if you like. And if not, I will just call you wussy. No, that’s fine….some of my most upstanding friends like their margs saltless! I don’t judge. Keep limeade mix in freezer till ready to party use. Take out one half of mix and reserve in a different container. Empty other half into blender. Fill half way again with tequila. (I use Jose Gold, but if you are packin’ the Patron, more power to ya!) Fill one quarter full with Triple Sec and add. Squeeze juice of both limes in blender as well. Fill to the brim with ice. Mix will be thick, but softens to a loveliness over just a few minutes. Here’s the key!!! Pay attention. Don’t drink yet! Slowly drizzle some Gran Marinier over the top of each drink. Now taste. Aha! Who’s your momma now? Wait, don’t answer that! I am only two peoples’ mama. That I know for sure. Okay, drink up, put on some Tito Cruz and get dancin’!

Fun, Creative Cocktails for Warmer Weather

Boy, has it been a long, cold winter here in New England. As the warmer weather slowly begins to approach, I get excited. Not only can my three-year old daughter finally go outside to ride her bike and play on the swings without being bundled up in 3 layers of clothing but it also means using the grill more often and eating on the back deck. Even with a slight chill in the air at night, we love using the grill and feeling fresh air as we eat dinner outside.

The warmer weather also means more gatherings of friends and family on the deck. We love entertaining, having people over and being creative with food and drinks.  So as we approach the warmer weather holidays of Easter, Passover, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, I thought it would be the perfect time to share yummy, eye-appealing cocktails. If you prefer non-alcoholic drinks, I provide an alternative version too.

Peach SangriaPeach Sangria
Spring & Summer just wouldn’t be the same without Sangria, the fun, festive wine-based drink ever-present in the warm weather months. This is a different take on the recipe! 

  • 4 peaches
  • 2 tablespoons brown raw sugar
  • 1/2 cup peach brandy
  • 1 750 ml bottle of Prosecco (I prefer Ca’Furlan Prosecco), chilled
  • 1 cup peach nectar, chilled (preferably Goya)
  • Club soda, chilledCut peaches into wedges; put in the pitcher with sugar and brandy and let sit for at least an hour. Add Prosecco and peach nectar. Top with club soda just before serving. You can also add other fruit too. Serves 6.

Nonalcoholic version: If you prefer to still have a fun drink for a child’s birthday or brunch without the alcohol, then simply leave out the brandy ingredient and substitute the Prosecco with a nonalcoholic sparkling drink or water that’s peach flavored.

Mimosas
Mimosas are probably one of my favorite drinks – simply because I love bubbles (sparkling wine) and orange juice. Mimosas are classic and have been around forever. In addition to just sparkling wine and orange juice, I like to add in some orange liqueur. Mimosas are great anytime but also for brunch with quiche, souffle or toasted Italian bread with fresh orange marmalade.  

  • One (1) 750 ml bottle of very cold Sparkling wine (I like Grandial Brut because it’s dry yet inexpensive, $10.49)
  • 1 cup of cold orange juice (I prefer Simply Orange or freshly squeezed orange juice)
  • ½ cup of orange liqueur (Mathilde or Cointreau is preferable)

Mix all ingredients in a glass pitcher. Serve immediately into Champagne glasses! Serves 6.

Nonalcoholic version: Just combine a nonalcoholic sparkling wine and orange juice. Voila!

Blueberry Lemon Burst
 The flavors of blueberry and lemons together are like yin and yang. The sweetness of blueberries dovetails well with the tartness of the lemons. Enjoy this on a hot Spring day, whenever we get one!

In a pitcher, mix vodka and lemonade. Let chill in the refrigerator for about an hour. Put 3-4 blueberries (or more depending on your taste) in the bottom of each glass. Then pour the drink over top of the blueberries. Make 3-4 servings. Serve in a Martini glass.

Nonalcoholic version: Mix 8 ounces of blueberry or blueberry/pomegranate juice with just a couple ounces of lemonade. Add fresh blueberries. Or for a different twist reverse the amounts of the blueberry juice and lemonade.

Let me know what you think! Share your comments!

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