Graduate school has wrapped up for the semester. I'm officially enjoying summer break and my, oh my am I ready to celebrate. I'm a bit sad to see (some of) the coursework come to an end. I really enjoyed the Collection Development course I took where I spent the semester building a special collection (Food and Cookery, what else!) for a public library setting. I envisioned a collection like that might be housed in the Free Library of Philadelphia to supplement their incredible Culinary Literacy Center, where they work to improve the city's literacy levels through culinary classes and programs in their library demonstration kitchen. The project further sparked my interest in integrating culinary programming into public libraries. More on that soon, but in the meantime, I'd like to celebrate the semester's end by sharing one of my favorite margaritas.
In my mind, margaritas are synonymous with slow, sunny days where there isn't much to do except spend time with people you love surrounded by great food and drinks. This lavender margarita is a go-to recipe for me in the summer, but I thought it would be fun to share today since Cinco de Mayo is tomorrow. If you're looking for a simple twist on the classic margarita, this recipe doesn't stray too far; it just uses a lavender simple syrup and salted rim dusted with ground pistachios. I generally opt for a bit of lemon in the margarita because it does so well with lavender--that's where the pistachio rim comes in, too--but using only lime is just as delicious. I hope you enjoy! -Mallory
ground pistachios + salt for the glass
2 ounces tequila (100% agave)
1 ounce Cointreau
1 ounce lime juice
1 ounce lemon juice
1 ounce lavender simple syrup*
Find your favorite rocks glass or any kind of small tumbler.
Pulse a handful of roasted pistachios in a food processor until finely ground. Make sure to pulse, not grind, so that it doesn't turn into butter. Mix in equal parts salt and transfer to a small bowl that is wider than the glass you're using.
Wet the rim of your glass with water (or citrus juice) then salt the rim by dipping it into the small bowl of ground pistachios and salt. Fill the glass with ice and set aside.
Place tequila, Cointreau, lime juice, lemon juice, and lavender simple syrup in cocktail shaker. Add ice until the shaker is half full. Shake for 30 seconds. Strain into prepared glass and enjoy.
Lavender Simple Syrup
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup dried lavender buds
Bring water, sugar and lavender buds to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the boil begins to roll, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let steep for an additional 10 minutes. Strain out the lavender buds and store in an airtight container, refrigerated for up to one week.