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Friday, May 5, 2017

How to REALLY make Margarita Jello Shots for Cinco de Mayo!

Margarita Jello Shots in Limes

Chef Dan is going to make a special Mexican Dinner tonight from recipes we learned at Josefina's Cooking School in Cozumel (see my previous blog post here) for a fun Cinco de Mayo evening at the Elkhorn Inn, and so I decided I'd make Margarita Jello Shots! I looked up recipes and found one on Thrillist, that looked really cute as they're set in lime halves, but when I started to make it I realized Very quickly that there was something Very wrong... It was impossible. LOL Or rather: it was impossible for ME to do it the way the recipe instructed, without it turning into the Epic #CraftFail Pinterest Project From Hell. LOL And so, trusty iphone by my side, I decided to Reinvent The Margarita Jello Shot Wheel- and make it SO totally idiot-proof that even I could do it!
The first thing the recipe stated was that you had to cut 4 limes in half and "use a spoon to hollow out the limes". Try that and see what happens. LOL I managed to get the juice and some of the pulp out with a spoon, but limes are totally full of fiber that no spoon will remove... so I took a pair of kitchen scissors to the insides of the little fellows, and voila! 8 little lime cups in no time flat! 
The next thing the recipe said to do was to throw away the lime juice and pulp- and use 2 cups of "limeade" instead! When you have a little cup of real lime juice and pulp from the limes  you just cut and hollowed out??? I pressed the lime pulp through a little strainer, and added the juice to 2 cups of water, and then added sugar and more lime juice to taste to make a nice, tart Limeade.
This you put in a small pot, and top with 2 envelopes of gelatin. (That part of the recipe worked fine. LOL)
Gelatin and water over low heat...
You cook this over low heat while stirring, until the gelatin is dissolved- about 5 minutes. Then you take it off the stove, and, according to the recipe, stir in 3/4 cup of tequila and 1/4 cup of Cointreau. Cointreau is an orange liqueur, and as we had Blue Curacao from our recent trip to Curacao, and it is also basically an orange liqueur, and a pretty blue color to boot, I decided to use that! NOTE: Use inexpensive, clear tequila for this. IMHO there is no reason to use expensive anejo tequila for anything other than sipping neat! :-)
Lime cups and a cup of  Tequila and Blue Curacao

The recipe then says, blithely, "Pour mixture into lime rinds". They don't mention that as you do this, the little lime cups will fall over and spill your precious tequila gelatin mixture everywhere. You need to arrange your lime cups so they don't wiggle or tilt, which for me meant to hold them in place on a plate braced by a couple of porcelain ramekins- see photo. A lime cup holds only a little bit of the gelatin mixture, so what to do with the rest? Make Margarita Jello Cubes, that's what!
Margarita Jello Cubes...
This recipe (2 cups of limeade and a cup of Tequila-Curacao) made enough to fill 8 small lime halves and a tray full of cubes; if you need more, just double the recipe. Then you are to put them all in the refrigerator for "3 hours or overnight". Be Very careful transporting them to the fridge- you will probably have to refill them a bit once they are settled in the fridge... For faster fun, set them in the freezer...
The recipe says to cut the chilled lime halves in half again to make wedges, but our little limes were tiny, so I preferred to serve them as they were, after dipping the rims in Margarita Salt.
Margarita Jello Shots with a dish of dipping salt
I was extremely pleased with how they turned out- very tasty, and adorable, to boot! And using the Blue Curacao made them pretty!

The Margarita Jello Cubes came out Really pretty- like giant aquamarine gems- and they are yummy! They looked very nice in a salt-rimmed glass of clear tequila, too! :-)

What are YOU doing for Cinco de Mayo? Did you try to make these, too? What happened? Tell me in the comments!

Margarita Jello Cube in Tequila, in a salt-rimmed glass

Margarita Jello Shot Cubes!
Chef Dab's Cinco de Mayo Dinner
#Chef Dan's Cinco de Mayo Mexican Dinner (made using several recipes from our wonderful day in Cozumel, Mexico at Josefina's Cooking School in Cozumel (see my previous blog post here): A delicious Mayan dip of ground, roasted pumpkin seeds, tomatoes, cilantro, and garlic (in the Mexican mortar); chicken marinated and baked in Achiote Sauce; nopales (cactus), sauteed with chopped onions; rice cooked in chicken stock, with tomatoes, garlic, cumin and other spices; an amazing, blistering hot green sauce we brought back from Costa Maya that has no name; tortillas; and my Margarita Jello Shots!

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