Boozy Drinks

Citrus Margarita Mix {The Leftovers Club}

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In 1989, a battle raged long and strong in this Latina’s heart. It was about a year following the release of the movie Dirty Dancing. The cult classic where leather jacket wearing, mambo dancing, bad boy Johnny occupied many a day dream. Johnny danced his way into my heart and was watched on VHS no less than 3 million, 500 hundred thousand, 387 times. I mean, really?  Johnny removed Baby from her corner. Securing a job at a Poconos resort in my teens was at the top of my list – Because dammit – There was a Johnny out there and I was determined to get me some of that!

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Cut to 1989 and enter the movie “Salsa”. There was a collective whiplash by every pre-teen Latina in my neighborhood. We dropped our VHS copies of Dirty Dancing without a second glance and ran, entranced to our TVs.

You need to understand. This was pre-NKOTB and post Menudo. Many of us still had Menudo jackets. Every once in a while we’d dust our Menudo buttons and sighed whilst staring wistfully at our favorite Menudo member. We were in boy band limbo. And so when former Menudo, Robby Rosa starred in a movie, we watched. Robby wasn’t my favorite Menudo, yet there was something about a Puerto Rican in a 1989 Jerry curl which held me spellbound. My brain screamed: Robby! Robby! Robby!


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The premise of the movie was clichéd and stereotypical.  Rico, a fatherless barrio boy worked a menial job as a mechanic by day and danced salsa by night. Led by hormones and ego, he was convinced the title of “King of Salsa” at fancy nightclub “La Luna” was his. The movie was full of sensual dancing, soul thumping rhythms, and wet tongue kisses which left visible trails of saliva, and left us girls wondering: Is this how it’s done?

We watched it every single time it was on. After a while Rico replaced Johnny in my fantasies. At the top of my list was securing a day job as menial supermarket checkout chick, while my nights were spent dancing sensual, sweaty salsa in skimpy outfits. I would kiss boys like Rico with abandon, leaving visible trails of saliva.

That movie was chock-full of bad decisions. In retrospect, it depicted Latino youth in such a bad light. It was horrible, really. The acting was sub-par; the line delivery was always a millisecond off. Its only redeeming quality was the dancing and the soundtrack. BUT if to this day, you mention the word “Margarita” in my presence, I am reminded of the movie Salsa. I am reminded of the dancing – Of my favorite phase of the flick, uttered by Rico’s sister; “Don’t call me Puta, Cabron!” It’s just how my brain works after watching a movie 3 million, 657 thousand, 287 times. In 1 year.

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And with this, I bring you Citrus Margarita Mix. Because we sometimes we need to make bad decisions inhibited by alcohol and very bad flicks which emphasize a stereotype.

Kidding… Not kidding. Maybe, I dunno…

This margarita mix is just citrus juices – Orange, lemon, and lime – Combined with vanilla bean simple syrup, and a little bit of vodka for preservation. I shipped a bottle of margarita mix to Mary from Homemade Cravings which I was paired with this month for Leftovers Club.


What is the Leftovers Club?

Well… It’s the most awesome club ever! Each month you are paired with another food blogger/member of this club. All you have to do is mail your leftovers to them and then post your recipe on the first Thursday of each month.

Easy, right?

Visit The Leftovers Club to learn more and JOIN!

Back to Mary and her terrific blog! Actually, I’ve met Mary in person at 2 Big Summer Potluck events. Her blog is full of amazing recipes – such as these mouthwatering mini pumpkin donut muffins with spiced white chocolate glaze, and this coconut chicken with pineapple sauce.  Seriously, I’m going to crash her dinner table and pretend I’m part of her family.

Pass the peas?

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Anyway, margarita mix just takes a good citrus juicer-thingy and the ability to shake a jar vigorously. No, really… Beginning to end margarita mix should take no longer than 7 minutes. At this point feel free to make a bad decision following a pitcher of margaritas, or just 1 margarita.

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I suppose it would depend on your tolerance for alcohol. Me? I’m a lightweight. OR, you can just rent a movie which underlines the stereotypes of your culture and marvel at how far removed you are from them.

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Whatever floats that Margarita boat.


Citrus Margarita Mix


For the simple syrup

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla bean paste

For the citrus margarita mix

  • 1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice 3 oranges
  • 1 cup fresh squeezed lime juice 8-12 limes
  • 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice 8 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon vodka

To make 1 Margarita

  • Kosher salt for rimming the glass
  • 4 oz (1/2 cup) margarita mix
  • 1.5 - 2 oz silver tequila
  • 1/2 oz orange liqueur such as triple sec or Grand Marnier
  • Ice
  • Citrus wedges/slices for garnish optional


  • Make the simple syrup: Combine water, sugar, and vanilla bean paste in a small sauce pan over high heat. Bring to a full rolling boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is slighthly syrupy. Remove from heat, set aside to cool.
  • Make the margarita mix: Once the sugar is cooled pour it into a large jar. To the jar add the vodka, orange, lime, and lemon juices. Seal the jar and shake vigorously to combine. Margarita mix will keep in a tightly sealed container in your refrigerator for over 3 weeks.
  • To make 1 margarita - Rim a margarita glass with kosher salt and set aside. To a martini shaker, Add the citrus margarita mix, tequila, orange liquor, and ice. Shake for a few seconds until combined. Pour into the salt rimmed margarita glass. Drink...

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