the hip-ster margarita

[hip-sters] are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20’s and 30’s that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter.

hip-sters love crafty things. craft beer. craft food. craft cocktails. everyone loves cocktails, put the word “craft” in front of it, and you get to charge $10-$15 for a tiny little cocktail that is gone in about 3 sips. that’s not my kind of cocktail.

last week, we made some delicious Salsa Guacamole. as I mentioned in that recipe, there was too much juice (lemon, lime, pineapple), so I decided to make a complimentary cocktail with the leftovers (I don’t like to waste anything, least of all anything that could go into a cocktail!). the thing I love about cocktails, is that you can loosely follow a recipe. some people (me) like their cocktails on the boozy side, others (who’s that? certainly not the hip-sters) not so much.

A cocktail shaker, a mason jar, and some flair is all you need to make a hip-ster happy.

A cocktail shaker, a mason jar, and some flair is all you need to make a hip-ster happy.

i am a HUGE fan of the traditional margarita, but lately (and by lately I mean the last time I really played with the recipe was in September when I made a watermelon margarita for our road trip south of the border) I have been experimenting with switching up the flavors, but keeping as close to the basic recipe as possible.i threw my juices into a cocktail shaker added 2 shots of tequila (ok, ok, maybe it was a smidge more than 2 shots), ½ shot of Grand Marnier (because, people, use only the best ingredients when you are not making pitchers upon pitchers of the stuff), and ice. i shook that up. took a sip. it needed something… throw in some leftover cilantro- seriously, who uses that whole bunch???- and add some chili-infused honey. it doesn’t get much more hipster than THAT. oh wait, it does. pour that shit into a mason jar, jab a sprig of cilantro into the lemon rind, and NOW you have a hip-ster margarita.

you’re welcome.

crafty cocktail: the hip-ster margarita

crafty cocktail: the hip-ster margarita

p.s. this made 2 cocktails…for me.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

¡Holy SALSA GUACAMOLE!

“On the menu” this week I used the versatile avocado to make a version of guacamole that I found in one of my cookbooks: from our restaurant’s kitchen, a recipe collection from FORK, a beautiful restaurant in Philadelphia, and one of the first places my husband and I went on a date (the strip club in college didn’t count as a date, Rob). This is an Avocado Citrus Salsa, or as I like to call it ¡Salsa Guacamole! I think by this point we all know the benefits of the amazing avocado: vitamins and minerals galore, plus it’s a healthy fat. BOOM. I used to dislike the almighty avocado for its creamy texture, likening it to mayonnaise and such (ew, gross). However, since moving to Southern California, I have incorporated the avo into almost any meal type- breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I still don’t particularly enjoy the avocado as a standalone fruit (yes, it’s a fruit, did you know that? Did you know that it is also known as the “alligator pear”? I sure didn’t!); I prefer to add it as an ingredient to salads, or spread it over toast like butter. This was a very easy recipe to follow, with few ingredients, bursting with fresh, fruity flavor. If you are a “traditional” guacamole nut, you may be completely horrified at this take on the staple of Mexican restaurants everywhere. But, honestly, a salsa/guac COMBO?! Mind. Blown. I am one of those people that almost always scoops a little guacamole + a little salsa onto my chip. How did I never think to make this myself? I chose to skip the fatty chips, and instead use this as a compliment to my morning eggs. I think it would be absolutely amazing with shrimp, and the cookbook also suggests it as a topping for grilled fish. Versatility, that’s what I like in my food. All of the ingredients can be found at your local supermarket (no need to visit a specialty store or Whole Paychecks). I opted to spend slightly more money to buy all organic produce at Stehly’s Market, the local farm store a block away. Come to think of it, did I really spend more money? Because what I saved in time and money NOT driving probably more than makes up for it. I digress. I even shelled out for fresh squeezed pineapple juice. It smelled amazing. Like summer on the beach…This recipe will put you in a summer state of mind for sure! I cut this recipe in half. It made enough for probably 4-6 people. Shannon’s Avocado Citrus Salsa, adapted from from our restaurant’s kitchen

A rainbow of color to start you off!

A rainbow of color to start you off!

6 ripe avocados , peeled, pitted, and diced large 4 TBS cilantro, chopped 1 red onion, lazily diced1 orange, sectioned and diced large-ish juice of 2 lemons juice of 2 limes 1 ½ cups pineapple juice* 1 TBS garlic, chopped 1 tsp cayenne pepper 3 TBS brown sugar** 2 TBS ground cumin *I did not use all the liquid, and the Salsa Guacamole was still quite runny, so I would start with less and add more liquid as you need for the consistency you like. **Honestly, between the orange and the pineapple juice, I don’t think the brown sugar is necessary AT ALL. I also don’t use a lot of sugar in my daily life, so I may be more sensitive to the taste than you may be.

Chunkify your life!

Chunkify your life!

Combine the avocados, orange pieces, and lemon & lime juice in a bowl. Put everything else in a food processor (which pretty much means all the cutting, chopping, and dicing of ingredients above can be VERY sloppy!). Pulse. PULSE. Don’t turn the damn processor full on. You’re not trying to make a freaking avocado smoothie for goodness sake. You want the ingredients to still be chunky. But, you know, do whatever works for you. Keep it as chunky as you want, or don’t want. Add your processor contents to the contents of your bowl, give it a swirl with a spatula, throw some chopped cilantro over it, and voila, ¡SALSA GUACAMOLE!

Use your Salsa Guacamole with chips, fried plantains, over eggs, with shrimp, or grilled fish, or anything else your little heart desires!

Use your Salsa Guacamole with chips, fried plantains, over eggs, with shrimp, or grilled fish, or anything else your little heart desires!

-Enjoy- P.S. Don’t worry, you know all that extra juice I saved? It’s going into a fabulous tequila cocktail…

Posted in Appetizer, Food, Snack | 1 Comment