When the weather’s hot (Summer’s coming, we promise!) it’s hard not to crave something simple, refreshing and thirst quenching. We love how Justina Blakeney‘s menu for her fabulous Summer party for Pottery Barn does just that. Smoky and spicy margaritas, cool and crisp watermelon agua frescas and easy crab guacamole and chips are all it takes to quiet an appetite on a hot summer day.
Take a look at Justina’s delicious recipes below, and see her full Pottery Barn feature (plus all the dinner/glassware in the photos) here.
Photography by Danae Horst
Smoky Serrano Infused Margarita
For the Serrano-Infused Tequila:
1 medium sized serrano pepper
10 oz tequila (we used Don Julio Anejo)
Slice pepper in half lengthwise, leaving veins and seeds intact. Place pepper and tequila in a jar or bottle with a lid and let sit 24 hours (or longer, depending upon how spicy you like it).
For the Margarita:
1.5 cups fresh lime juice
1 orange, juiced
1/2 c simple syrup
1 c serrano infused tequila
1/2 c orange liqueur (Grand Marnier, triple sec, etc)
1 c soda water
Smoked sea salt
In a pitcher, combine lime juice, orange juice and simple syrup- stir. Add tequila, triple sec, and soda water.
To prepare glasses, make a small slit in the lime wedges and place salt on a small plate or bowl. Run lime wedge around the rim of each glass, then dip glass into salt, turning until rim is coated.
Add ice to each glass and fill.
Watermelon Lime Agua Fresca
4 cups watermelon, cubed, seeds removed
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
4 T sugar
Lime slices for garnish
Add watermelon, lime juice, and sugar to blender pitcher. Puree until smooth. Serve over ice and garnish with lime slices.
Guacamole con Cangrejo: Crab Guacamole
2 perfectly ripe large avocados (or 3-4 small ones)
1/2 large white onion
1-2 roma tomatoes (depending on size)
1 bunch cilantro, washed and trimmed
6 oz crab meat
Dice the tomato and onion and rough chop the cilantro- mix together in a small bowl. Set aside.
To prep the avocados, slice them in half lengthwise and remove the pits. Now make 4 lengthwise cuts to each half, without cutting through the skin, essentially scoring each half. This makes it easy to remove the flesh with a spoon. Once you’ve scored all your avocado, scoop the flesh out with a spoon into a large bowl. With a pastry blender or potato masher, mash the avocado slightly- there should still be chunks of avocado visible.
Now, gently fold the tomato-onion mixture and the crab meat into the avocado, careful not to over mix or break up the crab meat too much. Add the juice of one lime, and salt, to taste. Serve with tortillas chips.
*Safety note: Because of the crab meat, be sure to keep this guacamole on ice during your party.
See the rest of Justina’s summer party & tips here.