Thursday, August 14, 2008

Magenta Margaritas

One look at a prickly pear margarita and Southwestern seasonal heat seems to melt away. Often a swirl of pale pink and deep magenta, this margarita has become a staple throughout San Antonio and many other Southwestern cities since its introduction in Morrison, Colorado, according to the

Made with syrup created from prickly pear juice, this margarita takes a 500-year-old food staple of Native Americans and turns it into a frozen treat that simultaneously packs a punch and beautifully complements enchiladas, guacamole and chips or steak fajitas. The next time you visit the Southwest, try a new twist on an old cocktail favorite.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Cherry Berry Fudge

After this chocolate lover visited Door County, Wisconsin during the height of cherry season, and saw a plethora of gorgeous berries too, I decided to combine chocolate with a few of these beauties in dried form. I started with a 1996 recipe from Borden, reduced the nuts by half, and then added cherries and berries. It's all about indulging your sweet tooth and tasting a bit of summer in every bite.

Cherry Berry Fudge
Makes about 2 pounds

24 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
14 ounces (one can) sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
dash of salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup dried blueberries (may substitute other small berries)

Line an 8- or 9-inch pan with foil. In a heavy saucepan, over low heat, melt chips with condensed milk and salt.* Remove from heat and stir in nuts, vanilla, cherries and blueberries. Spread evenly into foil-lined pan and chill for two hours or until firm. Turn fudge onto cutting board, peel off foil and cut into squares. Store loosely covered at room temperature.

*Microwave instructions: In a one-quart microwave-safe bowl, combine chips with condensed milk and salt, cooking on high for three minutes or until chips melt, stirring after each 1 1/2 minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients. Proceed as above.

*Do not use a double boiler as the chocolate and milk will not merge correctly.