EASY BASIL MARGARITAS
We've now been in the mid to upper 90s for the past few weeks here in Oklahoma City, and I don't know about you all, but a hot summer day by the pool just feels wrong without a fresh margarita in your sunscreen slathered hands.
Trust me, I love a classic frozen margarita with bottled mixers just as much as the next woman, but freshly squeezed limes, homemade simple syrup, basil grown in your own garden and a Himalayan rock salted rim that honestly cannot be beaten. And I know, you're thinking that sounds like way too much work when you've already battled your sticky sunscreened body into a bathing suit from last year that is magically now half the size (or at least feels like it), but let me tell you. It is SO worth it. And probably much easier than you would think!
When you're selecting a tequila for a fresh margarita, quality is a bit more important than if you're dumping some tequila into a blender with ice and a bottled mix. Like everyone, I love Patron, but let's be honest, $80 a bottle is more than most people care to spend sometimes. Hornitos is a great tasting tequila that's at a comfortable price point of about $25 at your average liquor store. It's great in fresh margaritas or palomas (follow me on Insta for an herb-infused paloma recipe later this summer!) and, if you're feeling crazy, makes a pretty decent shot. I use their Plata (silver) Tequila
2 oz. Blanco or silver Tequila
1.5 oz. Fresh simple syrup (standard for margaritas is Triple Sec, but I keep my bar cart fairly simple. Pun intended? You decide.)
Handful of fresh basil (my basil grows out of control, so I'm pretty generous
Rinse the basil and set aside a leaf or two for garnish. Add the rest to your cocktail shaker. (Psst: super cute cocktail shaker alert)
Squeeze the lime into the shaker and muddle the basil and lime. Add the simple syrup/triple sec and tequila, then shake!
To salt the rim, I usually squeeze a few last drops out of the lime and roll a tiny bit of simple syrup around on a saucer or in a shallow bowl, then dip the rim of the glass in it. There are a ton of great margarita salts out there (and yes... if you're a sugar rim person, I am judging you a tiny bit), but I'm a big fan of fresh ground Himalayan salt for margaritas. It just feels like the ocean.
Strain into the glass filled with ice and garnish with basil (for the Insta, of course) and a lime wedge if you're feeling extra fancy. Enjoy!