When we see "bloody" in a drink's name we tend to think of a tomato juice cocktail like the bloody Mary. That is not the case for this bloody margarita. Instead, it is a blood orange margarita that features the wonderful flavor of a blood red citrus fruit.
Blood oranges are a little sweeter than the more common varieties of the fruit. The taste is more like an orange with a hint of raspberry. Blood orange juice is not the easiest ingredient to find. It's certainly not as readily available as the average orange juice, but it is worth hunting down.
It's a perfect match for your favorite tequila and the cocktail is very easy to mix up. It makes a fantastic winter margarita because that is when blood oranges are in season, so keep an eye out for them.
Pour the ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice cubes.
As with most margaritas, feel free to serve this one on the rocks over fresh ice or toss it in the blender.
Fresh Blood Orange Juice
The best bloody margarita comes from freshly squeezed blood orange juice. The fruit tends to come into season in the winter because it's grown in temperate climates, including the Mediterranean and California. Even Texas has a nice blood orange crop.
Local markets in those areas should have blood oranges from December through April. Blood oranges will also appear around that time in other regions. If you see blood oranges, grab them, juice them as you would any other orange, and enjoy the freshest margarita.
Prepared Blood Orange Juice
Bottled or concentrated blood orange juice can be found year round and that is the next best option. It's not common, so you will have to look a little harder. You might have luck at natural food grocers, specialty markets, or in the organic or health food section of larger supermarkets.
If you find one, check the expiration date and stock up while you can. In the past, some great companies have given up on this juice because it doesn't have high demand. Also, you can expect to pay more for blood orange juice, but it is worth it.
If you cannot find fresh blood oranges or a juice, there are alternatives. These tend to be available throughout the year and you will need to make some adjustments in the recipe to find a good balance of flavor. And yet, sampling your margarita experiments is not a bad job to have, so have fun with it and you'll find a mix that works really well.
Stirrings Blood Orange Martini Mixer: Blood orange juice and key lime juice concentrates are mixed with cane sugar to make a decent alternative to blood orange juice. It's available as a 750ml bottle, the same size as the average liquor bottle, so it will last quite a while and is one of the more affordable options.
Monin Blood Orange Syrup and Puree: One of the best-known syrup producers, Monin offers both a blood orange syrup and a fruit puree. Either would be a good substitute, though you will need to make adjustments from the recipe because both are thicker than a juice. Start with about 3/4 ounce, shake the margarita, and add more if needed.
Blood Orange Purees: Most often found at specialty grocers or those concentrating on gourmet food, it is possible to find a blood orange puree. Again, you'll need to make adjustments to the recipe to suit your taste. It is also possible to add water to a puree to create a juice using your blender. Depending on the puree, you may want to strain out any pulp.