How to Throw the Best Summer Parties

By Leslie Goldman

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Chips and guacamole
Jason Donnelly

Holy Ole!

Margaritas and summer go hand in hand. But there's more to Mexican food than a salted rim. "Mexican culture has always used spring vegetables in its cooking," explains Chef Servando Camargo of Chicago's Cantina 46. "They are perfect for summertime since they are light, healthy, colorful, and full of flavor."

Kick off your ultimate Mexican summer fiesta with Servando's guacamole: Fold together 4 avocados, 1/2 diced red onion, 1/2 cup fresh corn, the juice of 4 limes, 2 finely diced serrano peppers, 2 minced cloves of fresh garlic, 3 chopped, deseeded tomatoes, 1 bunch chopped cilantro, a chopped orange and yellow deseeded bell pepper—and salt, pepper, and cumin to taste. (To prevent browning, generously squeeze fresh lime juice on top and cover with plastic wrap before refrigerating—the wrap should lie directly on the guac.) Grill up some pork loin and dress it with a flavorful fruit salsa. You can also do the same with rabbit loin and pork ribs.

Wash it all down with refreshing blackberry mojitos: 1.5 ounces rum, 1 ounce simple syrup, the juice of 1 lime, 12 muddled mint leaves, 10 blackberries, and ice, shaken hard, topped with 3 ounces club soda.

Smoked Chicken Quesadillas with Mango Salsa

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