Latin Twist: Fresh Orange Margaritas


My dear friends, I’m not just thinking about sunny flavors because it’s a rainy Friday. I’m thinking about orange margaritas to commemorate a holiday in Mexico and many other parts of the Americas that started many, many moons ago: El Día de los Muertos, The Day of the Dead.

Now stay with me! Many of you may have heard of this celebration, or even seen some of the delightful art that has been created—continues to be created—as part of this day. (In fact, locally, the New Rochelle Public Library creates, thanks to our community, a beautiful display of the art that is part of this holiday; it’s definitely worth a visit!) The idea of this ancient-born holiday is to celebrate the lives of the deceased in a lively and festive manner!

So, I was thinking celebration, and thinking about Mexico, and came up with a treat I think you’ll enjoy: Fresh Orange Margaritas. Yes you’ll get a work out squeezing those oranges and limes.


Stage one of the orange-margarita

But, mis amigos, you’ll find that that fresh-squeezed juice is so worth it! Seasonally colored—and not to mention deliciously-flavored—this margarita is one that marries well with so many treats (I’m thinking guacamole, toasted nuts, grilled fish, and so much more!). Also—and you know I love this quality in everything (and everyone, really!)—it’s flexible: you can spice it up with chile-spared salt on the rim  or a bit of jalapeño, or add more orange and lime.  Basically, like most of my recipes, you can—and should—vary it according to what you like. Would love to hear your Fresh Orange Margarita tales! In the meantime, ¡Buen provecho! Enjoy!

Fresh Orange Margarita2

Latin Twist: Fresh Orange Margaritas

Yield: 2 servings

This margarita recipe can easily be adjusted according to taste. It can also prepped ahead--and doubled for a bigger crowd!


  • 2 limes, cut into eighths
  • 1 orange, seeded and cut into small sections
  • Sugar to taste
  • 2 ounces fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • 2 ounces fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 3 ounces (or to taste) silver tequila
  • 1.5 ounces (or to taste) orange liqueur (Cointreau or Triple Sec)
  • Coarse salt or some kind of lime/salt/chile seasoning (we used Tajín), for rimming glasses (optional)


  1. Run one of the juiced lime or orange sections around the outside edge of two bar, wine, or margarita glasses and then dip in the salt. Set aside.
  2. In each of the two bar glasses (I do them separately, but you can do it in one!), use a muddler or a wooden spoon to muddle half of the limes and orange with about a teaspoon each of sugar (again, you can adjust the sugar later).
  3. Add the fresh orange and lime juices.
  4. Add about a cup of ice into each glass.
  5. Add half the tequila and orange liqueur to each one.
  6. Cover with a shaker, and shake each one, and then adjust flavors as desired.
  7. Pour into the glasses, serve, and enjoy!


About Author

Maybe it was the dinner parties my mom always threw—or the hours I spent prepping and cooking alongside her (and then on my own!). Or maybe it was array of fabulous dishes that my family sampled in New York City’s richly diverse restaurants, but I’ve loved creating, savoring, and sharing food for as long as I can remember. Living in Spain, and later in Peru, also greatly influenced my life. These years abroad taught me Spanish—and about living in different countries--but also introduced me to teaching English as a second language, which I’ve done—mostly in the US-- for the past 20-plus (yikes!) years. I’ve authored two cocktail/tapas books, Mambo Mixers and Calypso Coolers, coauthored more than 15 others (mostly food related!), and raised two children. Now I'm chef and owner of my own restaurant, Mambo 64 in Tuckahoe, New York. My message is the same, whether I'm teaching, writing, running the restaurant or being a regular guest on the Spanish-language network Telemundo (on the morning show, Buenos Días Nueva York!). My belief in food—and the power of food—is far reaching, and is married with another one: the power of stories. I’m sure that if we could all sit down and have meals together, sharing both tastes and tales, we’d have peace on earth. Enjoy!

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