Happy Cinco de Mayo, guys! Whew. Is it just me or has it been nearly two months since we celebrated a culture by drinking and getting into some serious meat sweats? Just me?
Believe me, I’m not complaining. If Lithuanian-Americans (all 18 of us) get our own holiday here, I will be the first to put on a sweet Grateful Dead basketball jersey–I am not making that up–and guilt everyone I know into honoring my people by drinking beer and eating meat and potatoes.
Until that happens, I have this.
It’s a beer margarita that is also a michelada (depending on whom you ask), but it also has mango shrub in it? Go with it. Trust me. I’m not a rocket scientist, but last week I helped an old guy buy stamps from a vending machine at the post office, so.
Remember when we made mango-chili shrub? That stuff sticks around in the fridge, sealed airtight, for a while. It mellows with time, but it keeps well. We are using hot sauce in this drink, so obviously, the chili part shrinks into the background here. In fact, the actual recipe below is for plain old mango shrub; all you’re really looking for is a slight vinegary tang with a little fruit on the side. I think this would work with just about any fruity shrub you can dream up–or any shrub you may already have on hand.
You can even give a nod to clamato (often an ingredient in the classic michelada) with a tomato shrub, I think. Just leave clams out of it for now–gross, why did I even bring that up–and don’t be mad at me if it turns out weird. If you stick around long enough, I’ll try it myself first when tomato season comes. Deal? Deal.
But that’s still a long ways away. You know what isn’t? Cinco de Mayo, too many tacos, and the start of that time of year when nothing sounds better at the end of a long day* than something ice-cold and a little** boozy.
*or anytime–I’m not the boss of you.
**or a lot–again, not the boss of you.
Meanwhile, I literally just jotted down “tomato-basil shrub, wheat beer, probably tastes like pizza”
in my journal of deepest feelings and desires on my electricity bill. Good things are in store this summer, whether or not that idea is one of them (spoiler alert: probably not but WHO KNOWS).
- 1 cup diced ripe mango
- 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Coarse salt, to rim glass
- 1 ounce blanco tequila (Espolon used here)
- 3/4 ounce mango shrub
- 3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
- A few dashes hot sauce
- Your favorite Mexican lager (Bohemia used here)
- Combine mango and vinegar in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Cover and let it steep at room temperature for 3 days, giving it a gentle shake every day.
- Strain mixture through a cheesecloth, squeezing out as much liquid as possible. Strain again through a fine-mesh sieve lined with a paper towel.
- Bring the vinegar mixture and the sugar to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Cool completely. Makes about 1 cup.
- Combine tequila, shrub, lime juice, and hot sauce in an ice-filled cocktail shaker. Shake until thoroughly chilled, then strain into an ice-filled, salt-rimmed pint (or other beer) glass. Top with the lager and garnish with mango or lime.