As some of you know, Ben turned the big 3-0 last week and his only request for his birthday was a Mexican themed party with margaritas. Ok, easy enough. So, about one month in advance, I enlisted the help of my sister for some of the creative aspects and then got to work planning.
Over the last month or two, I’ve posted a few recipes that ended up making their debut at the party. The chicken salsa verde and the southwestern beef brisket were both popular fillings at the taco bar. The refried beans and lightened up taco dip were also great additions. And, did I mention easy?! Seriously, it one of the best and easiest parties I’ve ever thrown. I think that was largely due to the fact that the food was all ready to go beforehand and then kept warm in slow cookers. The only thing that needed restocking during the party was the bar and the ice for cocktails and margaritas. Super manageable…I highly recommend this strategy if you’re planning a large party.
I got these cute chalkboard signs at Michael’s and they turned out to be a great addition. Not only did they tell our guests what to expect in each container, but they also helped keep things organized on both the bar table and the taco bar.
I also used the chalkboard stickers for the pitchers of margaritas. You know, just to make sure no one got a habanero margarita unexpectedly. We wouldn’t want that to happen! I also used the little stickers for the Margarita toppers. As a “Margarita Connoisseur,” Ben wanted to provide his favorite floaters for the guests to add to their Classic Margaritas.
For dessert, I had originally planned to bake up some churros after our guests ate, but the party was so fun that I totally forgot! Oops! Good thing I had whipped up some homemade funfetti cupcakes too. They’re Ben’s favorite cupcake and I have to say, the boxed variety doesn’t have anything on the homemade kind. We’ve been missing out for so long! No longer! The recipe was super easy and will be featured here soon.
The birthday boy had a great time and hopefully our friends did too. Mission accomplished!
This drink is a delicious, refreshing, classic Margarita. No mixes here!
- 2 oz silver tequila (I like Herradura, Don Julio, or Patron)
- 2 limes, juiced
- 1 oz Cointreau
- 1 oz Simple Syrup or Agave Nectar (you can omit this if you like it less sweet)
- In a shaker, combine the tequila, Cointreau, lime juice, and sweetener. Add ice.
- Shake until combined and cold.
- Pour into a glass to serve.
- To make it a cadillac, add 1 oz of Grand Marnier.
A slightly sweet and slightly spicy Margarita, this drink is a twist on the classic Margarita.
- 2 oz pineapple juice
- 1.5 oz tequila (We used reposado. Silver Tequila would also work)
- 1 oz Cointreau or Triple-Sec
- 1 lime, juiced
- To infuse the habanero into the tequila, start a few days in advance by de-seeding a habanero and halving it. You'll want to wear gloves! Add the halves to a mason jar or a covered glass. Depending on the spiciness of your habaneros, they may only need 4 hours to infuse. If they're less spicy, they may take up to 24 hours. I recommend checking on the tequila at 4 hours, 8 hours, 12 hours, and 16 hours so that you aren't surprised with potent tequila with too much kick. Once the tequila has reached an acceptable spice level, strain the tequila and remove the habanero. You can infuse and store the tequila (once infused) at room temperature. The tequila will last, so don't worry about making it in larger batches.
- Once the tequila is infused, you're ready to make your margarita.
- Combine the tequila, Cointreau, pineapple juice, and lime juice in a shaker with ice.
- Shake to combine.
- Pour in a glass to serve.