I can’t believe how quickly time has gone by! Last week I was in Miami, cooking and eating and enjoying the local flavors and hot weather. Now, after a 3 day car ride back home, I am freezing in New York. Needless to say, I have been pretty behind on my posts.
This Paloma cocktail recipe is one of my favorites. I came up with it because this winter I found myself eating tons of grapefruits. I love their tangy bitterness and juicy flesh. I peel them and eat them like oranges. When I was in Mexico over Christmas, I thought I would use the juice in a tequila based cocktail. I came up with the Paloma Pura.
For those of you that don’t know, a Paloma is a long drink of tequila with Fresca and ice. Paloma means dove in Spanish, but I do not know how the drink got its name. Since I am a purist, I decided to use freshly-squeezed grapefruit juice and top it off with soda water to give it the bubbles. That is why I call it the “pure” Paloma. My aunt had a glorious bush of basil in her yard, so I used torn up basil as a garnish. It really does add a certain something to the drink, but it is still pretty darn good without it. Unfortunately for us in the Northeast, basil and grapefruits are not really in season together, so I guess the garnish is for Mexicans and people down South! This was featured this week on Kitchen Caravan, as a cocktail for our Valle de Bravo Comida en el Campo lunch. I also made it in Miami, and got everyone hooked.
Paloma Pura Recipe
1 grapefruit, halved
1 lime, halved
1 tablespoon sugar
2 oz. tequila*
2 fresh basil leaves (optional)
Squeeze the juice of the grapefruit and lime into a bowl, it should equal about 1 cup. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.
Prepare two cocktail glasses with ice. Divide the juice between the glasses and pour 1 oz of tequila into each. Top off with a little bit of soda water.
If using basil, tear up the leaves and add to the glass.
* I like tequila reposado (aged), and use Cazadores, Centenario, or Jose Cuervo Traditcional. For mixed drinks you do not want to use the best tequila, nor the worst, so go for something middle of the road.