If I haven’t already bored you to death with my odes to all things spice, this post is sure to put the nail in the coffin caliente.  But I just can’t resist.  My favorite place to indulge this addiction is San Francisco’s Mecca of Mexican food, Tacolicious.  On any given visit, I order the same thing: Ahi Tuna Tostadas “contramar-style” and Pasion Margaritas.  Before Tacolicious introduced me, I’d never imagined that a cocktail could be both spicy and sweet.  Needless to say, el Pasion has quickly become my favorite cocktail second to bourbon.


When a friend of mine offered to host a rooftop party on a particularly warm May evening, I decided that it was the perfect time to recreate my Tacolicious order.  The tostada was easy: tuna, chipotle aioli, crispy leeks, and avocado.  The only element that wasn’t straight-forward was the crispy leek.  After a little research, I came up with a recipe that tasted remarkably similar, and only took fifteen minutes to make. 

The margarita was a bit more challenging.  After looking up the ingredients on the Tacolicious website, I was hopeful that the cocktail would be as simple as the tostadas.  The only ingredients posted were passion fruit, lime, silver tequila, and habanero peppers.  Unfortunately, it is nearly impossible to find passion fruit in San Francisco.  Tempted to substitute mango, which are widely available this time of year, I consulted a chef-friend who said that the result would be much sweeter than the Tacolicious version, and may not pair quite as well with the habanero. 


After checking the frozen fruit selections, and nixing the pulp-free passion fruit juice options, I settled on canned fruit.  Yes, I realize that this doesn’t whet the palate quite like fresh passion fruit – but with the notion of accessibility ever at the forefront of my mind, it provided the most authentic taste with optimal convenience.

The results were well-worth any difficulty that I had figuring out the recipes.  The fresh fish tostada paired with spicy-sweet margaritas were a hit at the party.  This duo will be my go-to for the rest of the summer!  xx tt


Tuna Tostada Recipe – makes 12 tostadas


·  1 pound sushi grade Ahi tuna (Whole Foods usually has this)

·  12 tostadas (sold at most grocery stores)

·  1 cup mayonnaise

·  2 garlic cloves

·  1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder

·  2 medium leeks

·  4 teaspoons olive oil

·  4 tablespoons flour

·  2 teaspoons paprika

·  1 teaspoon garlic powder

·  ½ teaspoon kosher salt

·  2 ripe avocados  

·  Limes for garnish


·  Preheat oven to 425

·  Trim tops of leeks and cut of bottom

·  Chop leeks

·  Rinse in hot water

·  Toss in medium bowl with olive oil, flour, paprika, garlic powder, and salt

·  Spread in an even layer on baking sheet

·  Bake for 12 minutes, remove from oven and let cool

·  Dice garlic

·  In a small bowl combine mayonnaise, garlic, chipotle powder, and a pinch of salt to make the aioli

·  Cut tuna into 3-inch by 1-inch strips

·  Cut avocado into slices

·  Assemble by smearing aioli onto tostada, sprinkling crispy leeks, places a few pieces of tuna, and topping with two slices of avocado

·  Serve with lime wedge


Passion Fruit Habanero Margarita Recipe – serves 6


·  6 passion fruits and half a pineapple or 4 cans Dole Tropical Fruit Salad

·  10 limes

·  ½ habanero pepper (no seeds)

·  3 cups silver tequila (I used Herradura)

·  1 cup Grand Marnier


· Chop passion fruit and pineapple into chunks and place in large bowl (or dump contents of canned fruit into bowl)

·  Squeeze/juice limes, add to bowl

·  Dice habanero, add to bowl (for less spice, use quarter instead of half)

·  Place mixture in batches into blender (I used a Vitamix, but you could use a food processor, immersion blender, or standard blender)

·  Puree until smooth

·  Place back into bowl and add tequila and Grand Marnier

·  Stir until combined

·  Serve over ice


t+tTIP: If you haven’t already, check out the new Tacolicious location in the Mission, which features sweet patio dining and takes reservations for parties of 12+!


To learn more about me, click here!