My mom has given me loads of good advice over the years. She taught me to trust my instincts, but not men who wear rings. She taught me to think for myself and avoid smooth talkers. And from pretty much the first day I discovered what alcohol was, long before I even considered trying it on my own, she told me “some of the worst decisions I’ve ever made, were under the influence of alcohol.”
For better or for worse, I’ll be able to say the same thing to my hypothetical children some day as well. Far from being a wild child, I can still admit that some of the worst decisions of my life were most definitely made under the influence of alcohol. [Ugh. That goes for most of us, right?]
What I can also admit, is that one of the best decisions I’ve ever made was over a pitcher of margaritas.
Last year on a blustery, miserable, snowy winter day, much like the ones we have been experiencing here lately, my girlfriends and I decided we needed a little something-something to kickstart our week. We met at our local taco joint which not only serves $8 fajitas on Mondays, but even better, $10 pitchers of margaritas. Seriously can you even beat that?
As we poured our second pitcher, someone made a suggestion.
We should take a trip. I need something to look forward to.
Yeah, let’s go somewhere. Somewhere warm. Somewhere fun.
Have you guys ever been to New Orleans?
And that was that. We went home and immediately started researching. Because of some work and school commitments, we all agreed that we wouldn’t be able to take the trip for a few months, but within a week of that pitcher of margaritas we had booked our flights and found the perfect hotel in the French Quarter.
The so-weird-how-amazing-life-is-sometimes thing about this all is that when you make plans over a pitcher of margs to go on vacation with your girlfriends, you don’t expect to it be a life altering decision. But it kind of was. Maybe life altering is a little bit exaggerated and pre-mature, but surely year-altering. I for one never expected a pitcher of margaritas to change my year the way that that one did. But it happened. That plan sprouted by restless minds and fueled by tequila, spurred an unfolding of events that I certainly never could have imagined on my own. So today, in celebration of great plans and great drinks, I’m sharing a seasonal margarita recipe with you.
Instead of the classic lime margs, which are typically my first choice, we’re making Blood Orange Margaritas. Blood oranges are only in season for a short amount of time every winter, but when that time comes, I can’t get enough! I love the sweet-yet-bitter flavor that reminds me of a hybrid between an orange and a grapefruit. Even better than the flavor is that color. That color! In addition to making margaritas, I’ve been topping salads the ’em and adding slices to my cottage cheese and yogurt in the morning.
Blood Orange Margs are a little more bitter than a traditional margarita, especially since I refrained from adding much sweetener to the drink itself [the only added sugar comes from the tonic water]. I like the extra zing of bitterness, but rimming the class with sugar is the perfect way to balance it out a bit. For a traditional marg, I typically rim the glass with salt, but for these ones I actually prefer the sugar.
- 3/4 cup tequila
- 1/3 cup triple sec [or other orange liquor]
- 1 cup fresh squeezed blood orange juice [approx 6 oranges]
- 2 cups tonic water
Combine all ingredients in a pitcher. Stir well and pour over ice into sugar rimmed glasses.
This recipe will make two large margaritas or three or four more reasonably sized ones. Roommate and I split a batch for an at home happy hour last Friday before departing for our respective weekend plans. I totally recommend grabbing a girlfriend and doing the same to kick off your weekend in a few days.
Cheers to drinking responsibly.
And cheers to planning under the influence.