Tuesday, December 27, 2005


In our annual holiday discussions about egg nog, let us not forget coquito -- the Puerto Rican version that packs a serious punch. There are quite a few variations on this recipe which includes rum over the more American whisky, and coconut milk. A friend brings this rich holiday treat to my Christmas party each year and I'm always reminded of how much I love it. He makes a few variations, but here's a basic recipe (from henchoenPuertoRico.org):

28 Ounces Coconut Milk
2 Cups Bacardi rum
14 Ounces Condensed milk
4 Egg yokes
1/2 Teaspoon Cinnamon

Add the coconut milk or cream, condensed milk, four egg yokes, rum and the cinnamon in the blender and blend well. Pour into a bottle and refrigerate well. Serve in small cups and sprinkle top lightly with nutmeg.

Now, most people who make it will use both condensed milk and evaporated milk, omit the eggs, and add cream de cacao. With this mixture, it's thick enough without the eggs and keeps longer. My friend uses spiced rum, and also adds vanilla and Sambuca. The licorice flavor of the Sambuca just adds another layer of complexity, making it rich with an unidentifiable high note and spice. He also adds this is more like a shot and less like a glass of nog. It's served in small glasses.

His recipe probably looks something more like this:

2 cans evaporated milk
2 cans cream of cocoanut (Coco-Lopez)
2 cans condensed milk
4 - 6 oz Captain Morgan's or other spice rum
2-4 oz Sambuca
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract

I haven't attempted this yet, but can say that it might also be nice with ice in a blender in the summer (or over ice with a little umbrella in it.) It's all to taste, of course. Everyone knows the tasting is the fun part! So, while the holidays are still here, don't forget the nog -- and try something different this year with Coquito.

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