It’s about that time, Cinco de Mayo is upon and all I can say is “people let me tell you ‘bout my best friend”. No silly, it is not a person. It’s Tequila. More specifically Tequila with a little heat. We are in Texas after all, and we know you love a good margarita, but we thought we would channel our inner Spice Girls and “Spice up your Life.” What better way to celebrate than to add our favorite ingredient- Peppers? There is a whole world of peppers that can add heat to your recipes, but each is completely individualized by its flavor profile. For example, Poblanos – Smoky, Habaneros – mellow/slightly acidic, Jalapeños – herbaceous, this list goes on and on! For this particular batch of heat-packed amazingness, we went with Serrano peppers. Serranos can be a milder pepper, in terms of flavor, but pack a punch in the heat department (when in season).
This play on a Paloma is a really good way to couple spicy with sweet, tart, and savory components, and is just festive enough to get you through your Cinco De Mayo celebrations!
1.5 ounces Reposado Tequila
1-ounce Guava Juice
1.5 ounces Italian Prickly Pear Soda
A splash of Grapefruit Juice
1 Serrano Pepper slice
Garnish with a lime wheel
To get this party started, you will want to measure out the base of this drink – the alcohol! Take a pint glass, sure the one that is left over from last week’s NFL draft will work just fine. I mean alcohol kills germs, right? Throw in some ice cubes and toss in the Tequila and Cointreau.
Once you have the liquor in the glass you are going to want to drop in that slice of serrano. If you happen to be using a shaker tin, instead of a glass, you can rapid infuse that alcohol by shaking the tin with everything you have. Go ahead, go overboard, that way you can skip arm day at the gym but side tip – never skip leg day we all know how that turns out. If you are using the glass you will want to muddle that pepper seeds and all.To muddle you can use a long spoon, an ice cream scoop, or if you are really desperate use the handle of Phillips screwdriver that has been hanging out in the junk drawer just begging to be used. Use the blunt end of whatever object you go with and break apart that pepper using heavy pressure and some slight aggression. No judgement here.
Next, you will want to add the mixers to this concoction (note – the only time you should use a carbonated mixer is when you are finishing off a drink after all the mixing, stirring, and begging is complete NEVER before the shake). Add in the Guava and grapefruit juice and give that glass/tin a good shake or stir. So close, I can even taste it!
Last step, you’re almost there, we told you this would be easy! It’s time to grab your festive serving glass, or if you’re like me feel free to use the same glass you have been working with and the add ice straight in. (No need for added glasses around here, UGH, Dishes- AM I Right?!?!) Top the drink off with your prickly pear soda and garnish with a lime. For added fun and an oh so perfect Instagram photo, consider using an actual slice of prickly pear as your garnish instead of a lime. Oh, come on you know what prickly pear is. Remember those amazing giant cactuses that decorate our landscape because it is hotter than Hades here most of the time? The prickly pear is a fruit that grows on those. Yep, those little bulbs are indeed fruit, not the cactus pulling an Optimus Prime move. Side note: if you don’t have access to cacti at your own house, please don’t get caught “borrowing” it from a neighbor. Trust me, been there, done that!
Thanks for tuning in and remember Cinco de Mayo marks the beginning of our summer activities and as we all know summer in Texas lasts 6-8 months, so you might as well embrace the heat in your drinks and celebrate properly. Check in next month for a specialty Father’s Day cocktail and remember Cinco de Mayo is not limited to margaritas, let’s show some love for the other members in the tequila family!