It’s Time for an Arizona BBQ! 3 Unique Summer Recipes


Summer is fast approaching here in Arizona, the land of the sun! Since our favorite time of year is upon us, it brings to mind all those delicious and creative recipes that we can plan for our family BBQ’s. We are especially fortunate here in Arizona to have some really adventurous and unique recipes that we can show off to our friends and family. Let us name a few:

Grilled Cactus Pads
1. Grilled cactus pads can be an interesting treat – and we definitely have plenty of cacti in the Arizona desert. You will need about 1 pound of cactus leaves and some olive oil. Scrub all the cactus leaves well with some kind of vegetable scrubber to clean and remove any spines that may be on them. Use a potato peeler to cut around the spiny nodules and remove those as well. Grill the leaves over charcoal or wood fire for about 12 minutes or so on each side. Brush the leaves with olive oil while you are cooking and season to taste! Your family will be impressed!

Grilled Rattlesnake Recipe
2. How about offering your guests a little grilled rattlesnake when they visit Arizona? This would surely be a great topic of conversation for a BBQ meal! Snake, which has been described as a delicate seafood-like taste, is a great adventurous choice to impress some out-of-state guests. The recipe is simple. Skin the rattlesnake and cut the snake into 2 inch pieces. Place the pieces on a skewer and roast over coals or wood while constantly turning. The meat will quit sizzling when it is done, which is usually about 7 minutes or so. Serve and enjoy! Your guests will be happily surprised by the taste.

Prickly Pear Margarita
3. While you are out on the patio grilling, enjoying your guests, and lounging in the shade of your awning, you can also enjoy some unique and delicious Arizona cocktails. Impress your guests with a cool and refreshing Prickly Pear Margarita. The Prickly Pear Margarita is served by trendy restaurants across the southwest and can lend itself to a lot of variations in fruit flavorings or combinations. You can purchase Prickly Pear Cactus Juice in many markets across Mexico and the southwest.

Here is a simple and delicious recipe.

  • 1/2 cup crushed ice
  • 1 ounce freshly-squeezed lime juice
  • 1 ounce undiluted limeade
  • 2 ounces of your favorite Tequila
  • 1 1/2 ounces of Triple Sec
  • 1 ounce Prickly Pear Cactus Juice
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar or corn syrup
  • Lime wedges for garnish

Combine crushed ice, lime juice, Tequila, Triple Sec, Prickly Pear juice, and sugar or corn syrup in a blender. Cover and mix the ingredients. Taste test and add additional sugar or corn syrup depending on how tart you like the taste. Serve in margarita glasses rimmed in coarse salt, margarita salt, or sugar, add a lime wedge for garnish, and enjoy!

Remember, in Arizona you should always be under some kind of sun protection, such as a sun shade or awning while lounging in the backyard or on the patio. We all know that the sun can be very damaging to our skin and our patio furniture. Now that you have some great unique and adventurous recipes that will certainly wow your guests, get out on the patio and enjoy the sunshine!

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