If there’s one thing 2020 can’t take away from us, it’s our traditions. Even though this year has been beyond challenging, I still find myself looking forward to the holiday season and the warmth that accompanies them.
Many aspects of our lives look different now — how we celebrate the holidays will be no exception. It would be easy to focus on the negatives, but I prefer the opposite.
Let’s talk about eating and drinking!
Comfort food has its name for a reason. Together or alone, we can spend the holidays eating and drinking those things that make us feel good.
As the weather gets chilly, I get excited to mix up a batch of Coquito, Puerto Rico’s version of eggnog. Years ago, while vacationing in Rincón (a tiny surfing village on the tip of the island), I was introduced to this seductive, sweet, and strong coconut rum punch. The owner of our villa, Carlos, happily shared his family recipe. This cocktail quickly became a cult favorite in mine, as well.
Coquito means “little coconut” in Spanish, but don’t underestimate the punch this drink packs. I like to use good quality golden rum, preferably from Puerto Rico to keep it true to its roots. One or two small glasses, and you may quickly find yourself dreaming of the turquoise Puerto Rican surf!
Mix up a double batch or pitcher of this delight at Thanksgiving and keep it through the new year. However, if your people are like my people, it won’t last past day one.
Saludo de felicitación (best wishes, in Spanish)!
Carlos’s Caracol Ché Coquito
1 – 13 ½ oz can unsweetened coconut milk
1 – 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 – 5 oz can evaporated milk
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
4 egg yolks lightly beaten
2 cups golden Puerto Rican Rum
Combine all ingredients in a blender.
Blend well, refrigerate overnight and serve with freshly grated nutmeg.
Will keep for several weeks refrigerated.
Serve as a cordial in small, decorative glasses.
Makes about 10 servings.