Happy National Margarita Day!!! Let’s celebrate with Tangerine Thyme Margaritas!
Who knows why February 22 is the day to celebrate America’s favorite cocktail? Which president declared it to be so? Andrew Johnson? He seems like a real drinker. Calvin Coolidge? No one knows anything about that guy so maybe he was trying to make a lasting mark?
My belief is it falls in the middle of the dreariest part of winter because it is the perfect cocktail to lift your spirits—Tequila! Sour AF! Full of vitamin C! And it hits right at the heart of citrus season when the limes (and in our case) tangerines are plentiful and sweet.
How to Make Tangerine Thyme Margaritas
I think my love for margaritas is well known, and the reason I adore them so (besides the whole tequila thing) is the way you can so easily manipulate the flavors by adding a homemade syrup.
This thyme syrup adds a lovely herbal note to an otherwise sweet and tangy drink. It smooths out the edges and brings a warm winter feel. To make this syrup (and any flavored syrup) is really simple. You combine equal parts sugar and water (in this case, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water) and bring it to a simmer in a saucepan with the flavoring ingredient (in this case, a big handful of fresh thyme sprigs). Let it cook a couple minutes, then cover and let it cool to room temperature, allowing the thyme flavor to steep into the syrup.
The second component is the summery sunshine of tangerine juice. Ideally you can find fresh tangerines and juice them for the drink but if not, a jug of tangerine juice will also work. The difference is in the intensity. Store-bought tangerine juice is thicker and heavier making the thyme syrup have to work really hard to come through. Fresh-squeezed is lighter and brighter with a punch of flavor but one that mellows to allow the other components of the drink some room.
We are going to keep the party going tomorrow too when I take over The Latin Kitchen Instagram Feed! So come check me out on Friday, February 23. I’ll be making this cocktail recipe, talking about how to blend the perfect margarita, and what you should serve with it. See you there!
For the Thyme Syrup:
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- 4 ounces (1/2 cup) fresh thyme sprigs
For the Margaritas:
- lime wedges, for the rim
- kosher salt, for the rim
- crushed ice
- 2 ounces silver tequila
- 2 ounce tangerine juice (ideally fresh-pressed)
- 1 ounce thyme syrup
- 1/2 ounce lime juice
- thyme sprigs, for garnish
To Make the Syrup:
- Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan and place over medium heat. Whisk to dissolve the sugar then add thyme. Bring to a simmer and cook, 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat, cover, and let steep for 1 hour. Strain and chill. Syrup will keep covered in the refrigerator for 1 month.
To Make the Margaritas:
- Rub the lime wedge around the rim of a cocktail glass. Dip glass in salt to coat the edges. Fill glass with crushed ice.
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, add tequila, tangerine juice, syrup, and lime juice and shake vigorously. Strain drink into prepared glass and garnish with a thyme sprig. ¡Salúd!
One More Thing
Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno and use the #holajalapeno hashtag so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.
Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!