Spice up those winter blues with a ruby red margarita made with the abundant blood oranges of the season and a little muddled jalapeño. Shake up a few at home with this recipe from Chefs Mary Sue and Susan or visit Border Grill Mandalay Bay and Border Grill Forum Shops for a delicious variation on this spicy and tart cocktail served with a mole rim.
Makes 1 cocktail
1 slice jalapeño or serrano chile, with seeds
2 ounces tequila blanco
1 1/2 ounces freshly squeezed blood orange juice*, preferably Moro
3/4 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
3/4 ounce agave simple syrup**
Ice, for cocktail shaker and glass
1 strip blood orange peel, for garnish (optional)
1 slice jalapeño, for garnish (optional)
Place chile slice in a cocktail shaker and using a muddler or the back of a spoon, pound and crush to release flavor and heat. Add tequila, blood orange juice, lime juice, and agave simple syrup. Fill cocktail shaker with ice, cover, and shake thoroughly to combine.
To remove jalapeño seeds, double strain mixture by pouring through the cocktail shaker strainer and a small wire mesh strainer into a rocks glass filled with ice. Garnish if desired and serve immediately.
* Straining the blood orange juice to remove the pulp creates a more concentrated flavor and a smoother juice.
** To make agave simple syrup, combine equal parts agave nectar and boiling water. Cool and store in refrigerator until ready to use.
Mary Sue loves grilled beef heart for its chewy texture and lean, clean, meaty flavor. When well trimmed, it needs only a brief visit to a hot grill and a drizzle of aioli. If you can’t find arbol chiles for the marinade, feel free to change up the peppers depending on whatever your heart desires!
2 to 3 cloves garlic 1 jalapeño, stemmed, seeded, and roughly chopped 1 to 2 dried arbol chiles, stemmed and seeded 1/4 cup red wine vinegar 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 2 teaspoons sea salt Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1 pound beef hearts, trimmed of all sinew and silver skin
Aji Amarillo Aioli, see recipe below, for serving
To make the marinade, puree garlic, jalapeno and arbol chiles, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper in the blender. With motor still running, slowly add olive oil until thoroughly incorporated.
Cut the beef hearts into 4- x 1/2-inch strips about 1/2-inch thick. Place in a bowl, pour on the marinade, and toss to coat evenly. Cover, refrigerate, and marinate for 2 hours.
To cook, preheat the grill or broiler. Thread 4 or 5 pieces of beef heart on each skewer. Grill the skewers until seared on all sides, 3 to 5 minutes total. Serve hot, over Arugula, Fennel, and Blood Orange Salad if desired, with a drizzle of Aji Amarillo Aioli.
Aji Amarillo Aioli
Makes about 1 1/2 cups
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Juice and zest of 1 lime
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 to 3 tablespoons aji amarillo paste, to taste
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
In a blender, combine egg yolks, vinegar, lime juice and zest, garlic, salt, and aji amarillo paste. Blend until smooth. With the motor still running, drizzle in olive oil very slowly until mixture is the consistency of mayonnaise (adding too much oil will cause the aioli to break). Stir in parsley, taste, and adjust seasonings as necessary.