I was first introduced to prickly pear by my future mother-in-law, Jan, on my first visit to Austin... naturally, in the form of a margarita. Instantly, I was in love. The prickly pear syrup adds not only eye-catching color, but also a unique flavor that doesn't pollute the deliciously tart, salty drink with saccharin sweetness. I decided to buy a bottle of the syrup, and was pleased to find that one bottle goes a long way. I proceeded to make a classic margarita, with a little cactus twist. They were absolutely delicious, and I could have slugged back about ten of these cheerful little glasses. You may be wondering: are these frozen or on-the-rocks? The answer is somewhere in between, and the reason is both impatience in the freezing process, and inability to take photos before devouring a cocktail first. I told you they were good.
Prickly Pear Margaritas
Serves 2 (cocktails, not people... you'll want more than one)
4 oz. white tequila
1.5 oz. Cointreau
1 oz. prickly pear syrup, or to taste
1 oz. fresh lime juice
Coarse salt and lime wedge for garnish, if desired
On the Rocks: Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice, shake and pour.
Frozen: Combine all ingredients with ice in a blender, blend until desired consistency. Warning: this takes a lot more ice than I anticipated.