Margarita on the Rocks…Hold the TUMS

Perhaps this is a day or two late, but writing a blog post on Cinco De Mayo was the last thing on my mind.  I will preface this by saying I consider myself to have a “cast iron” stomach; I can eat just about anything, anywhere without the slightest ill effect. That being said, the only thing that has EVER given me heartburn is the artificial citrus flavoring used in commercial margarita mixes.  You know the ones I’m talking about; the bright yellow-green bottles of liquid, packed with high fructose corn syrup, countless dyes and preservatives, sporting the namesake of major tequila distillers, lined up on the store shelf waiting for the mixology-challenged consumer to knock off the dust that has accumulated since last May and cart the bottle home for the unenlightened dinner guests to consume.

The only things that distinguish any of these offerings from one another are the eye-catching colors and graphic design abilities of the marketing firms hired to design the labels. Knowing this, consider my surprise when I happened into the Tequila isle of my local BevMo and saw a bottle of margarita mix filled with a greenish-brown liquid and the word “ORGANIC” stamped across the label.

The idea is a simple one; add tequila to fresh lime juice and all-natural agave nectar for the perfect margarita.  The purveyor, Tres Agaves, has bottled organic agave nectar and fresh squeezed key lime juice added a preservative, to make it shelf stable, and let you pick the tequila of your choice.  If that isn’t enough to convince you to try it out,  a three ounce serving is only 68 calories.

Tres Agaves takes their idea a step further and sells the agave nectar as a standalone product.  If you have the time and access to fresh limes, you can eliminate the preservative from the recipe by combining the agave nectar, your favorite tequila and fresh squeezed lime juice.

I’ve also found agave nectar to be a great sweetener for any liquid application. It makes a perfect sweetener for tea, an especially good substitute for honey. It can be used in any drink recipe that calls for simple syrup or sugar.  And it can be used in place of corn syrup when baking or cooking.

It is available in both dark and light syrups and many claim it has health benefits as well.  If nothing else, it is grown organically and is also available at Costco and on Amazon Prime here for a lot less than you will find it selling for in the tequila aisle..



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