Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Making Mango Margaritas as a Metaphor for Life

Roy came to a cookout at my house this weekend. He came late, and probably only because I sent him a text message at noon that said, "Remember, you're coming to dinner at my house tonight."

So here comes Roy, and as I'm schmoozing with guests, he tells me he's brought the makings for mango
margaritas and where is my blender? By the sink. He goes inside. He comes back outside-- can't find the blender. I go inside and point to the blender next to the sink. He never noticed that sink. Will it chop ice? Will it chop anything? It's not a very good blender. He fills it with mango stuff and I start smashing ice with a crab mallet. The blender goes grrrr and nothing happens. I dump everything into the food processor and go back outside.

The food processor is leaking. Roy has come to find me. Are food processors supposed to handle liquids without leaking? I make gazpacho in it, but it leaks and I do it near the sink, pour fast, and wipe up the spillage. So it's no surprise at all to me that the food processor is leaking mango
margaritas. But wait, Roy says, we have to find the source of the leak. What? Why? Who cares where the source of the leak is? In a million years, it wouldn't occur to me to ask this. I pour the mush into a pitcher. Oh, only it's not mushed enough. Roy wants me to regrind half. I toss the whole thing back in and push the button. Orange junk explodes everywhere. The whole episode feels exactly like writing a book with Roy. I just want to get it done, and he's dealing with the details of the second sentence when there are chapters to go before we sleep. Who the hell cares if there is a comma there? Or orange goo on the counter.

Can we leave the alcohol out of some of the mix so the kids can have some? That, I'm told, will mess up the proportions. Proportions? I cook and bake by adding "some"....Roy reminds me of my mother who seemed to think I should measure, or be able to tell her how she could make the muffins I'd made. Measure? Proofread? Proportions? A cocktail needs proportions? Look, no one has ever left one of my cocktails unhappy. You add cranberry juice until the color is right: voila,
Cosmo! Roy will want me to figure out how to get blogger to add the accent squeal over the 'a' in voila.

Okay, so Roy's mango margaritas were a hit. Very good. A little later in the evening, I looked down at myself and realized my black shirt was splattered with large orange flecks all over it, but hey. And in his honor, we threw out the blender.

So I haven't quite figured it out: Roy is meticulous and a bit obsessive and very detail-oriented, except when he isn't. The time before when he made the drinks, he
texted me asking if he could borrow triple sec...when I was out, he actually made them without it-- a recipe made with one ingredient missing! (--years of psychoanalysis, I'm sure) And the meeting he was supposed to be at this morning at 9 am? Let's just say he texted back, "Yikes!"

Please, God, don't let Roy write a post about me.



For the Mango Margarita Mix:

  • 1 1/4 pounds fresh mangoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Gray salt

For the drink:

  • 3 cups ice
  • 1 1/2 cups Mango Margarita Mix
  • 4 ounces tequila
  • 2 ounces triple sec
  • Lime wedges
  • Mint Salt, recipe follows


Peel and pit the mangoes and cut them into large chunks. Place the mango in a blender with the water, sugar, and a pinch of salt. Blend until smooth. Taste and add more sugar, if necessary.

Fill the blender with ice and add the Mango Margarita Mix, tequila, and triple sec. Blend until smooth. Rub the rim of a margarita glass with a lime wedge and dip into Mint Salt to coat rim. Fill glass and enjoy!


katie said...

your post made me think of a metaphor on this level: different shrink perspectives? you want to just deal with the here and now, roy wants to look for the cause?

subconscious reflections of what you each view as important/relevant/essential?

Anonymous said...

You have such a big heart!!! Thank you for writing these posts! I sincerely doubt that my therapist would throw out the blender. I wish you were my therapist!!! My therapist doesn't tell me about his parties!


Crissy said...

thanks for including the recipe. I would have been quite upset if, after reading the post, there had been no recipe!

tracy said...

This is funny and cute.....but...are there more impotant things to blog about?

Anonymous said...

What a lovely description of the N - S difference in style (I'm referring to the Meyer's Briggs, here)
Close enough is good enough - just get it in the ballpark vs the need for precision and measurement (since facts are important).

Roy said...

Here is the recipe I used from Food & Wine:
http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/mango-margarita, which involves agave syrup, which I found in the baking section. Alas, I have not been able to find tajine.

It's amazing that two people so far apart on the N-S (iNtuitor vs Sensor) and P-J (Perceiver vs Judger) dimensions could complete a book together ;-)

Anonymous said...

I don't believe that the Meyer's Briggs allows us the gradient to parse the nuance, here. You might agree with me after reflection. Still, it's good fun.


Anonymous said...

Dude, you didn't complete it together. You barely escaped with your life.

Battle Weary said...

Margaritas are my drink of choice... sadly I am highly allergic to mangos. :( One sip of iced tea that had an (unknown to me) mango flavoring in it, caused my lips to begin tingling instantly. One bite (the first ever bite) from a fruit tray at work, caused my co-worker to ask "what happened to your mouth?", as I was wondering what had triggered my asthma. *sigh* My lips made Mick Jagger look like he needed lip implants! Too bad they taste so darn good!

Any recipes for watermelon margaritas? Had one at a restaurant and it was fantabulous!

Anonymous said...

so to finally be helpful, here... here's the secret to margaritas: good tequila, decent or good orange liquor, fresh lime juice, good salt. the fruit as in mangos or watermellons is only for covering up the taste of bad primary ingredients or for making the drink into an alcopop. all tequila is not the same, all orange liquor is not the same, all salt is not the same. lime juice is basically lime juice.

your choices are 3 when it comes to tequila--anejo, reposado, white. for the margarita, white is usually used, it is the least aged, not stored in oak barrels which impart other flavors (bourbon, port, blah blah) and not overpowering. decent orange liquors are just two: cointreau, grand marnier. salts vary widely. buy fleur de sol. be spendy. you can tell the difference if you have a mildly sensitive palate. trust me.

if you really want my suggestion buy reposado tequila, not just any, god forbid, but el tesoro reposado. anything less is a waste of cash and you might as well pop a few valium with a diet cherry coke, watch Eat Pray Love, roll over with a headache, and call it a night.

if you're using reposado, you have to go with the 'heavier,' more intense orange liquor--grand marnier. cointreau is okay if you're using white tequila. add to that the lime and the salt.

2 oz tequila, 3/4 oz grand marnier, 3/4 oz lime juice, salt the rim.

please, for god's sake, don't use a blender. put the drink in a shaker and pour it over ice. if you want a frozen drink pour vodka into a 7-11 slurpy.

a half dozen of these with a passable friend and you save yourself the therapist's bill for one week, maybe two.

i know, i know, i'll get criticism. i'm just telling you the correct way to do it.

and with this, my work is done here. be it a personal blog or a professional blog or something weird in between. no offense to those who continue to enjoy fruity margaritas or continue to use a blender.

Roy said...

Great to have someone here who knows what they are talking about.

Anonymous said...

I'm a Pyschiatry resident and it's so refreshing to read a doctors' blog that makes me laugh instead of analyzing the latest research on the genomics of Schizophrenia. I recently started a blog about residency, so your work is inpiring, but definitely more amusing.


Dinah said...

Here's a follow up quote from today's New York Times, an article on food processors (how timely)

You might correctly say “the blender can do a lot of those tasks,” but it can’t do all of them. Because the blender handles liquids so well, until recently there was an argument for both appliances. But some new food processors have water-tight seals on the top and bottom, so you can purée liquids for soups and drinks in them — making the blender an endangered species. (Unless, of course, you’re interested in puréeing rocks, vuvuzelas or iPhones, which third-generation blenders can do.)

I would pay to watch Roy put his iPhone in a food processor.