For Sipping: Watermelon Mint Margaritas

Photo by Maggie Brooks

Summer is slowly slipping away, but there’s still time to celebrate the sun. What better way to do that than with a pitcher of special margaritas with a summer fruit twist? Watermelon and mint is a lively combination that helps take a party favorite to a more sophisticated level.

Instead of putting mint directly into the drink à la mojito style, I chose to flavor the simple syrup with fresh mint. This method allows the fresh watermelon to the be the star with a subtle herbal background. If you like your margaritas on the sweet side, just add more simple syrup.

makes 4 drinks

3 c seedless watermelon, diced into 1 in cubes
4-5 tbs lime and mint simple syrup
1/4 c triple sec
1/4 c fresh lime juice
pinch kosher salt
1/2 c silver tequila

Lime and Mint Simple Syrup
1/3 c sugar
1/3 c water
zest of half a lime
1/4 c packed mint, roughly chopped

To make the simple syrup, combine the sugar and water in a small sauce pan and stir over medium heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from the heat, stir in the lime zest and mint, cover and allow to steep until room temperature. Strain into a small bowl, pressing on the mint leaves to extract as much flavor as possible. Set aside.

In a blender, combine all ingredients except the tequila and blend until smooth. Stir in the tequila and pour into prepared glasses. Garnish with mint, salt or a slice of watermelon.

If you take salt with your margaritas, simply dip the rim of the glass in a shallow dish with water and then into a shallow dish of kosher salt.

If you prefer frozen margaritas, add ice with the watermelon. Otherwise, pour the margaritas over ice.