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.
There’s nothing like a rich mug of hot chocolate to warm the soul on a cold winter night. We add our signature twist to this cup of chocolate with a fragrant mix of spices and a touch of orange zest. For the chocolate, try a nice Venezuelan cacao like El Rey’s Gran Saman Dark Chocolate 70% for a bold, earthy flavor.
Makes 8 cups
1/2 gallon whole milk
5 whole allspice berries
3 whole star anise
2 cinnamon sticks
Zest of 1 orange
2 tablespoons brown sugar, or to taste
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup rum
Combine milk with spices, orange zest, and sugar in large heavy saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar, until milk just starts to bubble around the edges (scalding). Lower heat and cook 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to steep 10 minutes.
Strain spice-infused milk into another large heavy pot, discarding spices. Add chocolate and rum to milk. Cook over low heat, whisking briskly until chocolate is completely melted. Serve immediately.
It wouldn’t feel like winter without a little nog. For centuries, egg-based drinks have been a popular holiday tradition throughout Europe and the Americas, with many cultures creating their own versions. Rompope, the rum-spiked eggnog from Mexico, is the inspiration for our favorite recipe yet. Since eggs, sugar, and spices were once considered to be foods of the upper class, eggnog was often used in toasts to prosperity and good health. Salud!
3/4 cup heavy cream
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup rum
6 egg whites
Ground cinnamon, to taste
Ground anise, to taste
Ground allspice, to taste
Freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
1 cup whole milk
Rum, to taste, for spiking
Whip heavy cream to soft peaks and refrigerate.
Combine egg yolks, 1/2 cup of sugar, and rum in a mixing bowl. Place bowl over a pot of gently simmering water and cook egg yolk mixture while whipping constantly. When mixture becomes satiny, remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
In another mixing bowl, combine egg whites, 2 tablespoons of sugar, cinnamon, anise, allspice, and nutmeg. Whip to soft peaks.
Fold whipped egg white mixture into cooked, cooled egg yolk mixture. Then fold in the whipped cream. Fold in the milk and refrigerate 4 to 6 hours or overnight.
To serve, spike with rum to taste.
Note: By combining some of the hot milk into the yolk mixture first, you are slowly heating the eggs to avoid coagulating or cooking them. This step, called tempering the yolks, is important in egg cookery because after an egg is cooked, there’s no turning back.