This creamy grapefruit margarita is a little bit tart, a whole lotta sweet, a tiny bit frothy, and finished with a Tajin sugar rim!
On the side of the Highway 1, somewhere between Watsonville and Santa Cruz, there is the farmer’s market of my dreams.
I was attending law school. David had just joined me in California. We were nearly broke and living in one of the most beautiful, expensive places in the U.S. in a 330 square foot studio apartment. And we loved it.
One of our favorite things to do was drive the coastline. And on the way back from one of our strawberry-picking trips to Watsonville, we found it. A 50-yard long, wooden farmer’s stand set back only about 10 yards from the highway. No sign proclaiming the name of said stand. Just tiny hand-painted wooden signs, spaced every 100 yards or so leading up to the stand, delivering news from on-high….
“ARTICHOKES – 10/$1”
“AVOCADOS – 10/$1”
“GRAPEFRUIT – 10/$1”
say wut? I’ve never turned off a highway so fast. Pretty sure we left some rubber there on Highway 1 for it to remember us by.
Guys. If it was reasonable to fly to California, drive back to that little stand, fill my farmer’s market basket with goodies, and come all the way back here to Denver . . . I would. Those signs did not lie and we filled our basket to the brim every time we were in the Santa Cruz area. Artichokes and avocados were a must. But the grapefruit. We’d buy so many and we knew they wouldn’t last forever. Suddenly it was grapefruit for breakfast and grapefruit on salads, and grapefruit with brown sugar for dessert.
Now, grapefruits transport me back to that magical place. Where I don’t remember how expensive that closet-of-an-apartment was and I don’t remember circling the grocery parking lot for 20 minutes just trying to find a spot and I don’t remember the lack of fall colors and winter snow.
I only remember incredible sushi with friends, the way The City looks when it’s covered in fog, the way the sun envelopes you on the beach after the breeze dies, and every last farmer’s market. How is that one, juicy little fruit can take me back to so much?
What do you mean “creamy” grapefruit margarita?
This recipe calls for a teensy tiny bit of egg white which – after a little trip in the blender – gives this margarita a frothy, almost julius-like finish. It is entirely optional and just as delicious without it. But I think it gives it that extra somethin-somethin. When you first pour the drink, it will look creamy, as in the picture, above. But it settles down to just a small layer of foam.
What if I don’t have [fill-in-the-blank] juice?
This grapefruit margarita recipe is very forgiving. I’ve made multiple substitutions at any given time and it always seems to work out. Just make sure that you’re substituting something of roughly equal sweetness. (I.e., swap fresh lemon juice for lime juice or vice versa; swap clementine juice for simple syrup or vice versa; etc.) If you don’t have lemonade, then use lemon juice and some more simple syrup to make up for the sweetness.
What can I substitute for blackberry liquor?
The blackberry liquor in this drink is mostly for color. After blending the juices, the color is a little lackluster, but the blackberry liquor gives it that perfect vibrant grapefruit-y color. So if you don’t have it, just leave it out! If you’re in it for the booze, then you can substitute for any fruity liquor or brandy.
What is Tajin?
Magic. That is what Tajin is. Okay, actually it is chile powder, salt, and dehydrated lime. It is good on pretty much all fruits I can think of, but we first experienced it atop the pineapple Dole Whips at Disneyland’s Tiki Room. (Where my Disneylanders at? Pro tip. When you order the Dole Whip, ask for a packet of Tajin!)
I think the Tajin sugar rim may be the reason I love this drink so much. The Tajin perfectly balances the sugar.
Can I make these margaritas ahead of time?
Yes! Combine all the ingredients, except for the egg white, and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve. Blend with the egg white just before serving over ice!
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