I’m having a pool party tomorrow, which means I needed to try out some recipes before hand. It’s all in the name of science, of course. And everything turned out spectacular. Want a twist on a margarita? Avocado fries? You do, even if you think you don’t. (And if you don’t like tequila or avocados, this is probably not the post for you. Also, I don’t think I want to be friends.)
First up, cocktails! The Pepino Sandía-Rita (Cucumber-Watermelon Margarita.) Alternate name: Snakebite. [sound of maracas] Click for the recipe!
- Tequila, and this must be good tequila. If you’re drinking Jose Cuervo, you’re not even drinking tequila. People who know better will laugh at you. You want 100% blue agave, particularly from Jalisco. The more filtered it’s been, the better it is. (And… the more expensive.) There are loads of great tequilas out there that won’t break the bank. Guys I know from Mexico drink El Jimador religiously. It’s pretty decent. Espalon is great. But I’m using Patron, and the good Patron, because I’m worth it.
- A Serrano pepper. Score this down its length to open up the inside heat, but not enough so the seeds get out. Fun fact: the seeds are where the real heat is. Read: danger.
- Triple Sec
- A cucumber. You’ll want to skin half of this and cut off the ends. Too much skin makes it bitter. Not enough doesn’t make it pretty and green and flavorful.
- Watermelon. Do yourself a favor and get a seedless one.
- Limes, wedges – lots of limes, btw.
- Simple syrup (1 C water, 1 C sugar, heat until dissolved, cool, put in a jar. This can be flavored for other drinks with mint, ginger, you name it.) OR use Agave Syrup
- Shaker, ice, your favorite tall glass.
TWO DAYS BEFORE YOU DRINK:
(I know, you want to drink now! TOUGH. This cocktail requires that you plan.)
Pour a good amount of tequila into a sealable jar/container and pop in that pepper. Shake it up, and let it sit. Every so often, give it a shake. After two days, pull out the pepper, don’t touch your eyes, wash your hands.
If you have a child who won’t behave, make them eat the pepper. It’s like making them smoke a whole carton of cigarettes. I don’t know, my kids are jacked up, and now you know why.
FANCY INGREDIENT PREP:
Chop up your cucumber into chunks, put that in a blender with about ¼ C of water, liquify that, and then get a cheese cloth.
What do you mean you don’t have a cheese cloth? Do you have a shitty kitchen towel? You don’t even have a shitty kitchen towel? EVERYONE has that one jacked up, torn tea towel. Fine, then get a shitty-ass t-shirt and feel bad about yourself. Put that over the mouth of a wide bowl, pushing it down a bit to make a well. (You don’t want it stretched taut, in other words. Big mess if you do this.)
Pour your cucumber-water in to that, slowly, and when you’re left with foamy solids, squeeze those out to get every last green drop. Wash out the cloth. No, don’t go saving the cucumber solids.
No, I don’t care that you want to make a mask out of it, you hippie. You’re better than that. Just… Just toss it. Or compost it. Thank you. Now rinse out that cloth, because you’re going to use it again. I don’t know, pour the cucumber-water into a fancy jar or something, why don’t you have multiple mixing bowls? I’m sorry. I apologize. That was judgey of me.
Now, do the same with a bunch of watermelon, the liquefying, the straining, the tossing of solids.
Chop up your limes into wedges.
- In your shaker add:
- a shot and a half of the tequila
- a shot of Triple Sec
- a shot of cucumber-water
- a shot and a half of watermelon…water
- a squeeze of a lime wedge
- a splash of simple syrup to taste (I don’t like it too sweet, so it’s just a bloop) or a squeeze of Agave Syrup. A bloop amount. #actualscience
Shake-a-shake-a your shaker, pop the strainer top (the nipple thingy) and pour it into your glass. Then, pop off the top and add the ice. (This is how you keep from going over. Just let me have this. I need these little moments to feel like I’m cool.)
Cut a chunk of watermelon, sprinkle salt on it, pop that baby in your drink all fancy like, squeeze a lime wedge over it and hold out your pinky, because you are worth it, too.
Mmm, that pepper-infused tequila makes it taste almost smokey. Nom nom!! Gulp-a-rific. I apologize, that was super lame.
Okay, now that we have our drink… hang on. This is really good. See? Have a taste. I KNOW, RIGHT?! So good. Just… grab some avocados and cut them in half while I have another sip. Or three.
Crap, I’m going to need to make another one, hold up a tick. It’ll only take me a second! Fine, I’ll make you one, too. It’s no problem, sugar beet. I’ll even give you a bigger piece of watermelon.
[clinks glass with you]
What are we making? Oh, right! Avocado fries. Holy smokes, these are so good. They’re in restaurants here, but I didn’t think of making them at home. Well, forget that noise.
What you need for AVOCADO FRIES:
- 2 large avocados, halved lengthwise, seed popped, and sliced into long slices. (Do you guys know how to do this in the skin? If you don’t, run the blunt side of your knife between the skin and the avocado all the way around to loosen it, then slice lengthwise, all the way through, turn it over a plate and squeeze the skin. Your lovely slices pop right out, no special tool needed.)
- ½ C flour
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 C panko (save the need for seasonings by buying seasoned panko!)
- seasonings like paprika, salt, garlic powder, black pepper, and my secret ingredient, a chipotle bullion cube, shh, don’t tell
- 3 bowls or plates for breading
- a wire rack and baking sheet, lined with foil. No, the sheet is lined with foil, not the rack. You don’t have a wire rack? How the hell do you cool your cookies? WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON’T MAKE YOUR OWN COOKIES? Honey. Baby. Why don’t you love yourself? Fine, you don’t need the wire rack. But this means you’ll have to flip your fries halfway through like some kind of jagoff.
Get that oven cranked to 450F. And take a drink, because your glass is right there. Seriously, it just gets better the longer it sits, right? [clinks glass with you] Oh, poor thing, you need another one. Hang on, I’ll make it up for you. See? This is why we leave the drink fixin’s out. Makes it easier for
fourths seconds. Aaaand I made too much for you, so let me just top myself off… Cheers!
Okay, there’s a lot of stuff on the table. Oh, right! Fries. Yeah, I’m going to need something to eat soon, whew.
Sorry, I was staring off into nothing. FRIES. Okay. Put the flour in one of those bowls. Crack the eggs in another and whisk ’em up. OH MY GOD, you know what would be great? A dash of chipotle Tabasco. It’s in the door on the right. No, the right. RIGHT. It’s… Yes, thank you. Pour the panko in the last one and put in seasoning. Probably a teaspoon of salt, I don’t, the amount in my hand. Well, I didn’t get the teaspoons out, that’s why I don’t know the actual measurement. I mean, relax. Just mix some flavors in there, a few shakes here and there, we’re not going to die if there’s not enough freakin’ black pepper.
That was rude. I’m sorry. You’re just trying to help. Lemme freshen your drink. Because I care about you, that’s why, silly!
Where were we? Oh! Put the wire rack on the baking sheet and have it in close distance, because we’re gonna assembly line this shizz. Avocado, flour, egg, panko, wire rack, left to right. Unless you’re left handed, then switch that.
Dredge an avocado slice in the flour, shake off the excess, roll it in the egg, make sure it’s all covered, let the excess drip off, roll it in panko, then put on the wire rack. Now, your fingers are going to get goopy and gross. Just know that. Use one hand for flour and dropping into the egg, and the other for retrieval and panko rolling so only one gets really gross. Repeat.
Man, we should have thought to put straws in our drinks so we don’t make a mess, huh? Oh, my gosh, you are so sweet to hold mine up for me. Seriously, you are the best.
Aaaaand all done! Hahaha, my fingers are gross, eww! Sorry. So we’ll just pop this tray into the oven for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until the panko is nice and brown and crispy looking. Which means time to make another drink. OMG, do not forget to set the timer. Just push the button. The timer…
The button that says TIMER on it, this isn’t rocket science. Wow, you cannot hold your liquor, hee hee! I’m just teasing you. I mean, come on. Look at me. OH! You know what would be awesome to make while those cook? Oh my god I was going to say another drink! Seriously, though. Seriously. I’m being serious. Look at me. See? I’m serious. You have a drinking problem. Because your glass is empty, ha ha! THAT IS A PROBLEM. So let me get you a drinking solution!
[clinks glass, spills a little]
You’re my best friend, did you know that? No, really. You’re just… solid, right? So, so good and awesome. I love you, man. Like, foxhole-buddy stuff. Seriously.
Hmm? Oh, right something to make. Dip. Dipping. Dipping sauce! Okay ranch is always good. Shut up, yes it is. You know who says it’s gross? Communists and hateful buttwads. But gimmie a can of chipotles in adobo from the pantry. Little can, red label… That’s it. I’m gonna pour some of that adobo sauce into some ranch and mix it up. TRUST ME. So, good. So, so good.
This is the part that sucks, and it’s that when the timer goes off, you have to let the avocados sit for like, five minutes. But then we can go crazy nuts! Okay, dip it in the ranch and tell me… I KNOW. It’s so good!! So now put a bite in-
Dude. Don’t double dip. I mean, I love you, I love you. I do. But I don’t want your mouth chunks in my dip. Break off a piece and try the adobo ranch.
SO FREAKING GOOD, RIGHT?! My hand is working so would you just pop that?
Mrrphglr grrbl. Sorry, I didn’t want to talk with food in my mouth. Oh my god. Oh, god. Okay, I’m going to lie down and you just drop these into my mouth, okay? You are so good to me.
I love you, man. Foxhole-buddy best friend TEQUILA!