Recently I was invited to the first ever Late July Snacks virtual Handcraft Cocktail Happy Hour hosted by Maureen Petrosky, Author of The Cocktail Club. Maureen’s book is available on amazon.com: …classic favorites like the Martini and the Old-Fashioned, as well as new sips like the Mason Jar Basil Pisco Sour and Blueberry Lavender Vodka Spritzer…the book also offers a delicious selection of hors d’oeuvres pairings like Grilled Figs with Proscuitto and Rosemary Lemon Bars.
Maureen is also the author of The Wine Club and regularly appears as a lifestyle expert on the NBC’s TODAY show.
With the first sip of this icy cold fruity margarita, I knew this would be my new favorite summer cocktail. Refreshing and citrusy, the perfect pairing with Late July Sea Salt and Lime Tortilla Chips!
Maureen Petrosky, Author of The Cocktail Club
Makes 2 drinks
- 2 cups of cubed, ripe honeydew melon
- 3 oz silver tequila* (I used Espolòn Blanco Tequila)
- 2 oz homemade sour mix**
- 6 jalapeño slices
- Coarse ground salt for rimming the glasses
- 1 wedge lime
- In a cocktail shaker, combine the tequila and 4 of the jalapeño slices. Muddle and set aside for 10 to 15 minutes. The longer it infuses the spicier the margarita will be.
- Purée the ripe melon in a blender or use a muddler to smash in a separate bowl or shaker.
- Use the lime wedge to run the flesh side around the rim of the glasses and lightly dip the glasses into the coarse ground salt. Fill each glass with ice.
- Take the shaker of infusing tequila and add the sour mix and the puréed honeydew. Shake and strain into 2 salt-rimmed glasses filled with ice. Top each with one slice of jalapeño. Clink!
- TIP #1 – For a zero-proof pour, swap the tequila for 1 1/2 oz orange juice and 1 1/2 oz pineapple juice.
- TIP #2 – For a spritzy zero-proof version skip the tequila and infuse the fresh jalapeño slices in lemon/lime flavored seltzer. Instead of shaking to combine, stir in the other ingredients, strain and serve.
**Homemade Sour Mix
Makes about 4 cups
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed and strained
- 1 cup lime juice, freshly squeezed and strained
- In a small pot, heat 1 1/2 cups water and the sugar until the sugar completely dissolves.
- Remove it from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
- Add the citrus juices and stir until they are evenly combined. Store in the refrigerator for up to one month.
Late July Organic Sea Salt & Lime Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips are toasted, then crisped for a delicate melt-in-your-mouth chip. Perfect for eating straight out of the big or paired with your favorite dips, our chips are USDA certified-organic, Non-GMO Project Verified, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Kosher and with no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives.
Late July Tortilla Chips come in four delicious flavors: flavors: Sea Salt, Sea Salt & Lime, Chia & Quinoa, and Blue Corn.
During this time of #stayathome, Maureen shared that she serves her guests (seated outside with proper social distancing) salsa and chips. Instead of passing around bowls, she places garden fresh salsa in cups and tops the salsa with Late July Sea Salt and Lime Tortilla Chips. That way each guest has their own serving to enjoy. See her social distancing tips at the end of this post.
Enjoy these fun summer recipes too…
Edible Watermelon Margaritas
Some Margaritas are on the rocks, some are frozen, and some you can eat!
(Excerpt from The Cocktail Club, by Maureen Petrosky)
Makes 12 appetizer portions
- 12 pieces of watermelon, sliced into wedges
- 1 1/2 oz of silver Tequila*
- 1/2 oz orange liqueur*
- 1/2 oz of fresh lime juice
- Coarse salt for garnish
- In an ice-filled shaker, combine the tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice.
- Fan the sliced watermelon on a rimmed plate. The plate or platter needs a slightly raised rim, so the cocktail does not pour out. Place the plate in the freezer for about 20 minutes to get an icy chill on your melon but NOT freeze it solid.
- Strain the cocktail over top of the slices of watermelon. I recommend putting your plate or platter where you will be serving it and then pour the drink over top of the watermelon slices to avoid spilling during transit.
- Serve the coarse salt in a small bowl alongside for guests to sprinkle on their edible margarita.
- TIP – Skip the tequila and orange liqueur and up the lime juice to 1 1/2 oz or use 2 oz of homemade sour mix instead of the tequila.
Zero-Proof Spicy Honeydew Margarita (big batch)
- 12 slices of jalapeño
- 2 cups sour mix, divided**
- 2 cups ripe cubed honeydew, divided
- 3 1/2 cups lemon seltzer water, chilled
- 2/3 cup orange juice, without pulp, chilled
- 2/3 cup pineapple juice, chilled
- Ice cubes
- 6 lime wedges
**Sour mix recipe above
- Combine the jalapeño slices and 1 ¾ cups of the sour mix, set aside.
- In a food processor or blender, combine 1 ¾ cups of the honeydew and 1/4 cup of the Sour Mix. Pulse until smooth.
Grilled Pineapple Salsa
Makes 3 ½ cups
- 1 cup diced mango
- 1 cup diced papaya
- 2 cups diced grilled pineapple*
- ½ cup diced red bell pepper
- 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice (1 medium lime)
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon coarse ground salt
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
*To grill pineapple, slice pineapple into rounds, spray each side with cooking spray and place on a pre-heated grill for 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown. You can also achieve this caramelization by placing the sliced pineapple under a broiler for 2-3 minutes per side.
Directions In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients and serve with Late July Sea Salt & Lime Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips
Social Distancing Entertaining Tips*
Maureen Petrosky, Entertaining & Lifestyle Expert
- Serve individual servings of snacks including chips and your favorite dips. Pre-portion servings into all-purpose wine glasses or acrylic cups if entertaining poolside. Put the dips in first (or a layer of each separated by shredded cheese for a pretty presentation). Next, top with tortilla chips for personal dipping. Keep pre-portioned dip refrigerated and top with chips right before serving.
- Use fun colored serving trays, galvanized metal, bold colored acrylic, or wood/wicker trays, for easy transportation from inside to out and back again.
- Always offer a nice, cool zero-proof drink option.
- Use your beverage bucket wisely. When serving up big batch cocktails or margaritas, use your wine bucket to keep big batches cool and carafes for margaritas instead of pitchers keeping the carafe cool in an ice-filled wine bucket.
- Create a welcome station. Include sunscreen, bug spray, first aid kit, and hand sanitizer for guests. This will keep you from running inside for these items and allow guests to use as needed.
- Create no cost centerpieces. Clip what is already growing in your garden or yard. Adding a vase or multiple small vases or jars of greens like evergreen branches, ferns or hostas pretty up every tabletop without spending a dime.
*These tips can be applied whether or not social distancing measures are in place.
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