Archive for November, 2010

Robin’s Margarita

This is my best friend Robin, and she knows a thing or two about making a really good margarita.  I thought I’d share a recipe I learned from her about 10 years ago and have been making ever since.  These margaritas are perfect for camping or anytime and they go oh so well with the camping tacos I just posted.

Robin’s Margarita

  • 1 (12 oz) can frozen limeade concentrate
  • 12 oz tequila
  • 12 oz beer (Mexican beer preferably)
  • 6 oz cold water
  • ice (lots of ice)
  • lime (cut into wedges)
  1. Pour the limeade, tequila, beer and water into a large pitcher; stir with a long-handled spoon until completely blended and the frozen limeade has completely melted.
  2. Add in lots of ice to the pitcher and stir again.
  3. Serve in a glass over more ice with a lime wedge.

To make it extra special…and why wouldn’t you want it extra special…pour in a bit of Grand Marnier right before serving!!!

For Frozen/Blended Margaritas

If you’re making these at home and you like a blended margarita, use the same ingredients as above except don’t add the 6oz of cold water.  Just use equal parts limeade, tequila and beer.  Fill the blender to the top with ice first, then add 6 oz limeade concentrate, 6 oz tequila and 6 oz beer.  Blend until smooth.  Serve as above, and don’t forget the Grand Marnier!!!


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Every year we make our way 3 hours north and spend a few days camping at Jalama Beach in Santa Barbara County.  My new favorite “beach camping dinner” is slow-cooked Achiote pork tacos.  They are so easy and delicious and you cook them all day in a pit in the sand!!! Here’s how to do it:

Achiote Pork Tacos

  • 3.5-ounce package achiote seasoning paste
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3-pound bone-in pork shoulder roast
  • 1 large white onion, sliced about 1/4 inch thick
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Reynolds Oven Cooking Bag

Place 1/2 package of the achiote seasoning (found at any Mexican market) in a small bowl.  Pour in 1/2 cup lime juice and 2 teaspoons salt, then use the back of a spoon to work the mixture into a smooth, thickish marinade.  Open the cooking bag and place the pork inside.  Pour the marinade over and around the roast.  Scatter the white onion over the meat.  Pour 1/2 cup water around the meat.  Seal the cooking bag.  Wrap the meat (that’s already sealed in the cooking bag) in several layers of aluminum foil, then place inside a disposable aluminum baking pan.  Cook all day (about 8-10 hours) buried in the sand…the meat will be fall-off-the-bone tender!!!  Use tongs to transfer the meat and onions to a serving dish/bowl and pour the left over cooking juices over the meat.  Shred the meat using two forks.  Serve with tortillas and your favorite taco toppings.  See below for photos on how to set up the pit and cook…

Alternate cooking instructions, for making these tacos at home: In a large (6 to 8-quart) Dutch oven, or heavy pot, assemble the dish as described above except don’t use the cooking bag.  Place the roast inside the Dutch oven and cover with a lid.  Braise in a 300-degree oven for about 3 hours, until the pork is thoroughly tender.

Instructions for creating the cooking fire and pit:

Scour the beach and gather several medium and large rocks to be used in the fire pit to cook the pork.  Put them off to the side for later use.  (A very good reason to have kids and invite your family and friends to go camping with you!!!)  While the rocks are being collected, dig a pretty good size hole/pit.  Approximately 3 feet deep and 5 feet across.  Fill the hole with firewood and set it ablaze.  When the fire has burned down a bit, it’s time to add the rocks.  Let the rocks heat up in the fire until all the wood has burned down and you are only left with hot coals and rocks. 

Now it’s time for the meat!!!  I don’t really recommend doing it barefooted like in the photo, but hey we’re camping and safety is up to you.  Place the meat on top of the rocks/coals.  Place a couple of rocks and a shovel full of hot coals on top of the meat so the heat will fully surround the meat.  Now all that’s left to do is fill the pit back up with sand and relax while your dinner slowly cooks to perfection throughout the day.

OK…8-10 hours later…you’ve had a fabulous day and now you’re ready for a margarita and some fabulous pork tacos.  Grab a shovel, a couple of friends and start digging.  Please be careful though, as you dig down the sand is still very hot and you gently want to search for your treasure.  Once you’ve unearthed dinner remove it from the sand while wearing gloves or using oven mitts.  Carefully tear away the aluminum foil surrounding the meat and cut into the cooking bag.  Place the pork and it’s cooking juices in a serving dish/bowl and using two forks shred the meat into smaller pieces.  While the pork is being dug up I heat up several corn tortillas and put them in a tortilla warmer and bring out all the fixings.  We usually serve our tacos with: diced onions & cilantro, salsa, and crema.  

Of course, most of the real “work” is done by Steve, I just take credit for prepare the meat and fixings.  When’s the next camping trip???

Dinner by the campfire...life doesn't get much better!!!

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