Cocktail: Habanero & Grapefruit Margarita

We’re packing up the car and heading into the city for a weekend away. We rented a house through VRBO, and are meeting a few good friends there to celebrate Matt’s birthday. I was cooking until midnight last night trying to get as much prep out of the way as possible: I’m very excited about the menu. I’ll post recipes and pictures next week. For now, a cocktail to enjoy this weekend. Its delicious! Have a great one. P1040271

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit

1 bottle of 100% agave tequila. I use Blanco here, but Reposado works well also. Save the Anejo tequila for sipping; this cocktail doesn’t showcase the tequila enough to warrant the aged stuff.

1-2 small habanero peppers, cut in half (I remove the seeds so I don’t have to strain it)

fresh squeezed pink grapefruit juice

squeeze of lime (optional)


Combine tequila and peppers in a pitcher. Cover and let infuse for about 3 hours, or longer. Taste frequently for heat. If you overdo it, add plain tequila to balance it out. Remove chilies and return to bottle.

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, mix 2:1 juice to tequila. Taste, I usually like to add a squeeze of lime but it depends on the tartness of your grapefruit. Shake & strain into glasses.

Optional: Fill a small plate with water. Dip rims of glasses into water, then dip half the glass rim into salt. Alternately, put a small pinch into the cocktail shaker before mixing drinks.

Have a wonderful weekend!


Dreaming of an Island

Yesterday felt like spring, you guys! I can’t tell you how much I needed a little sunshine. A fresh, warm breeze, chirping birds, and weather warm enough to paint (more on that soon!)Orcas_original

In these last stubborn days of winter my thoughts drift to childhood blueberry summers. Watching our toes turn blue beneath crystal mountain lake water, hiking up steep meadows for a view of the world. Scrambling over rocks at the beach to harvest clams. Eating dinner in the radiant light of the sun setting over water.

Off the coast of Washington State, just past the strait of Juan De Fuca, lies a little archipelago extending into Canada. The San Juan islands contain my island, Orcas.  DSC_0195

We’d board a ferry an hour north of Seattle and sail through tight winding channels between wooded, craggy shores. Up to a little cabin on top of a mountain, where life took place for glorious weeks at a time in a single large room. Weeks of exploration¬† and foraging, cooking simple meals with my mom and falling asleep beside a fire. The impossibly long days of summer.