Summer is Here

With temperatures rising above 100 here in the Valley of the Sun, it is time to say goodbye to spring and hello to summer.  Springtime in the Desert Southwest is a brief period of time, but it is stunning in its beauty.  I will have to hold on to these images in my mind in order to get through the next five months of 100 plus heat:

Close-up of the blossoms on the Palo Verde
Palo Verde and Frank Lloyd Wright’s desert Spire
I would love to have this one in our yard
Ocotillo, also known as coachwhip, slimwood and vine cactus
The bright crimson flowers of the ocotillo
The festive blooms of the prickly pear cactus
The blooms are also found in yellow and orange, but pink is my fave
The flowers of the prickly pear sprout fruit that looks similar to a fig.  The fruit, known as tunas, ripen in midsummer to a deep red color, and contain a sweet red-purple juice.  Prickly pear nectar is made with the juice and the pulp of the fruit, and is used to make candy, jelly, and syrup.  From the syrup, you can make a heavenly prickly pear margarita, that is so colorful your children might mistake it for a kiddie cocktail.
Watch out!
Prickly Pear Margaritas
6 oz. Tequila (don’t use the good stuff, plata – silver, unaged – is just fine)
4 oz. Triple Sec
4 oz. Freshly-squeezed lime juice (this is a must!)
2 oz. Prickly Pear Cactus Syrup
1 oz. Orange Juice
Mix all ingredients together and pour over ice, for a margarita en las rocas (on the rocks), or blend all ingredients with ice for a frozen margie.
Cactus Wine Cooler
1 T. of Prickly Pear Cactus Syrup
4 oz. of white wine (again, don’t use the good stuff!)
4 oz. of 7-up or club soda
Mix all together in a glass.
Check out a couple of on-line sources for Prickly Pear Cactus Syrup.  I found some great stuff on

Have a wonderful week!

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  • Sal

    Too cute! Hi Lelia! xx It's getting hot here in Texas too- Fredericksburg hit high 90s this weekend. Love you all and love the blog Marci!! xx Sallie

  • TexazTaste

    Hi Sal! Thanks for the comment. The photo was taken at Boudro's on a very hot and humid SA day. Stay cool :).

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