In Mexico, ripe fruit is often served with a dusting of chili powder, letting the slight smokiness complement the sweetness with a kick of spice. In particular, the mango-chili combination is a favorite at the paletería—the Mexican popsicle shop—and for good reason. Mango is easily one of the kings of fruit with its juicy golden flesh and superior sweetness, and it pairs just perfectly with the chili powder. Thus, the Mango-Chilirita was born!
The Mango-Chilirita infuses a simple syrup with a generous dash of organic chili powder, which is then passed through cheesecloth or a nut milk bag for a smooth result, free of visual chili flecks but bursting with an unexpected yet subtle spiciness. Combined with fresh lime juice and Honest Tea Mango White Tea, the Mango-Chilirita is refreshing and just perfect for summer!
- Chili simple syrup (makes 6 servings):
- 1/2 cup organic sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 1/2 – 2 1/2 teaspoons organic chili powder*
- Mango-Chilirita (makes 6 servings):
- 12 ounces tequila
- 3 ounces orange liqueur, such as Patrón Citrónage or Cointreau
- 16 ounces Honest Tea’s organic Mango White Tea
- 6 ounces fresh-squeezed lime juice
- 6 ounces chili simple syrup (recipe above)
- Chili-salt rim:
- 2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons coarse kosher salt
- Several dashes organic chili powder, to taste
To make the chili simple syrup: in a small saucepan, combine all ingredients over medium-high heat. While ingredients are heating, whisk to dissolve sugar completely. Bring to a boil then remove from heat. Cover and steep for 15 minutes, then pour through a fine-mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth or a nut milk bag to separate out all chili powder solids. Let cool completely.
To make the drink: combine all Mango-Chilirita ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake vigorously.
To rim the serving glasses: add 2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lime juice to a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, add 2 tablespoons kosher salt and sprinkle in a few dashes of organic chili powder, then stir to combine. Dip the rim of your serving glass into the lime juice bowl, then carefully dip the lime-wetted rim into the salt-chili bowl. Carefully add ice cubes to the rimmed glass, then pour in shaken Mango-Chilirita liquid. Serve immediately.
Note: You can easily leave out the alcohol to make this non-alcoholic. It’s just as refreshing!
*If you’re looking for a subtler chili flavor, use 1 1/2 teaspoons of chili powder in the simple syrup. If you like a spicier—but not overwhelming—kick, go for 2 1/2 teaspoons in the recipe.