Weather Updates


Updated: January 6, 2013 9:37AM


½ cups Jamaica Tequila (below)

1 cup fresh lime juice

½ cup orange Curacao or other triple sec

1 cup prickly pear puree (below)

½ cup agave syrup or simple syrup

1 lime wedge

Jamaica sugar (below) or granulated sugar

In pitcher, combine tequila, lime juice, Curacao, puree and agave. Cover and refrigerate until chilled (about 2 hours). Use lime and Jamaica sugar to crust rims of 8 (6-ounce) martini glasses. Fill cocktail shaker half full with ice and pour in generous 1 cup of margarita mixture. Shake and strain into 2 sugar-crusted glasses; repeat for remaining margaritas.

For Jamaica tequila: Measure 2 cups 100 percent blue agave blanco tequila into small saucepan. Cover and slowly warm over low heat. Remove from heat, add 11/2 cups dried Jamaica flowers, re-cover and let steep for 10 to 15 minutes. (Find Jamaica flowers at Mexican markets or online; dried hibiscus flowers can be substituted.)

Line a strainer with cheesecloth, pour tequila through it, gather corners of cheesecloth and squeeze or wring out flowers, extracting as much tequila as possible. When infused tequila has cooled, it is ready to use. (Infused vodka stores in glass container; it will keep its vibrant flavor for a couple months.)

For prickly pear puree: Peel 4 or 5 prickly pears. Cut a ½-inch slice off both ends of prickly pear; peel (make a ½-inch-deep incision down one side, end to end, then peel away thick rind). Roughly chop fruit that’s in the middle, and scoop it into food processor or blender and process to a smooth puree. Strain into container. Cover and refrigerate until used (up to 3 days).

For Jamaica sugar: Place ½ cup dried Jamaica flowers in electric spice grinder and coarsely pulverize. Mix with ½ cup sugar.

At its simplest, margaritas can be made with plain blanco tequila, prickly pear puree, and granulated sugar for crusting glass rims.

Note: Prickly pears (also called cactus pears or “tuna”) are most likely found in Latino markets. We found them at Rogers Park Fruit Market, 7401 N. Clark; HarvesTime Foods, 2632 W. Lawrence, La Chiquita Supermercado, 2637 S, Pulaski; Pete’s, 2526 W. Cermak, and Carniceria Jimenez, 3840 W. Fullerton.

Adapted from “Frontera: Margaritas,
Guacamoles and Snacks”

© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit To order a reprint of this article, click here.