I am a huge fan of seasonal ingredients. There is something about buying produce at its peak that just makes me feel good about myself. Over the weekend I was at the farmers market in Grant Park and almost every damn stall had either fresh citrus or peppers. Often times when I head to farmers market, I see things and sit like a creeper in front of stalls wondering how I would cook it.
When I saw blood oranges and jalapeños I really had the best intentions of doing a play on a fresh salsa or citrus salad. I was so excited to start experimenting when I got home but the blood oranges never made it into any of these crazy dishes I had planned. A big ass bottle of mezcal got in my way.
For those of you who don't know, mezcal is best described as tequila's version of a really peatty whiskey. Like tequila, mezcal is harvested from agave plants but the two spirits could not be more different. Because of the distilling process, mezcal can be a little on the pricey side but if you can find it, you need to RUN and buy a bottle (or two) for your home bar.
In this recipe, in addition to the beautiful color, the blood oranges add a really delicate citrus flavor that plays oh-so-nicely with the natural smokiness of the mezcal while the jalapeño really helps to kick up the underlying spice notes...do I sound a little bougie here?
Listen, all you need to know is this cocktail requires all of 5 ingredients, looks cool, and tastes better. If you can't find a bottle of mezcal you can totally substitute in some regular ole' tequila and you'll be just fine.
Do you have any favorite margarita recipes? Let me know and I would love to try them out!