RECIPE: Ponche de Coco (Dominican Style Coquito)
One of the best things about the Holiday season for us Dominicans is the consistency of the food at family gatherings year after year. The food that feeds your soul and makes you feel great about being with your family during the holidays, is probably the same food you've been having your whole life during this time of the year, homemade DELICIOUSNESS made by mom, and/or grandmothers, and aunts. The Dominican spread for the holidays, for example, almost ALWAYS includes pork leg (pernil), ham, turkey, chicken, beef lasagna, rice and beans, potato salad, macaroni salad, LOTS of beer, and flan to last for days.
So it goes without saying that there is very little surprises around the dinner table during Christmas. You eat what you always eat and stay away from what you never have. I have always stayed away from the coquito during holiday parties. Coquito is a traditional Puerto Rican drink very similar to eggnog made with rum. When I was much younger, I saw it around a lot, tasted it, deemed it too sweet, and thick, and never thought about it again until now.
Altagracia, who we like to call The Dominican Martha Stewart (due to her impeccable eye for decor, and her delicious recipes) invited Loyal Nana over to her humble and cozy abode in Times Square and shared her DOMINICAN style coquito (AKA Ponche de Coco) recipe. Since, I have made, gifted, drank, and dreamed of enough coquito to swim in.
This recipe is for you if you hate eggnog but don't know why, if you had it once but "it was never really your thing", if like to make some thing special in the kitchen as long as it doesn't take more that 10 minutes. This is for you if you love coquito and even have your own tradition around it. This is for you if you have never had Brugal in coquito before.
Here is what you will need:
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon of nutmeg
ground cinnamon and cinnamon sticks
1-2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
4 shot glass of Brugal (Dominican rum)
1 can of coconut cream
1 can of coconut milk
1 can of condensed milk
1 can of evaporated milk
2 scoops of vanilla ice cream
Step One: Into the blender, add one egg yolk
To make it easier, Altagracia makes a small round hole in the egg big enough for the egg whites to slip out, but small enough to hold the yolk in place
Step Two: Add one spoon of cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla extract
This part is to taste so if you LOVE nutmeg like I do, consider adding more
Step Three: RUM, RUM, RUM
Add 4 shot glasses of rum (you can always add more later)
Step Four: Blend mixture on high for 2 minutes
Blending this mixture for two whole minutes will help take the eggy taste out. So yes, let it blend for 2 whole minutes.
Step Five: Add in all of your cans to the blender
Grab your coconut cream, your coconut milk, your evaporated milk, and your condensed milk and dump it all into the blender
Step Six: Blend on high for 2 minutes
For a thicker consistencey, add 2 scoops of your favorite vanilla ice cream
Step Seven: Taste Heaven
Have a taste and add more of whatever you think might be missing. In our case... we needed more rum :D
Step Eight: Bottle the Coquito and let sit in the fridge for two hours.
However, there is nothing wrong with enjoying a glass of Ponche de Coco as soon as it is ready. Serve with crushed ice, and garnish with a sprinkle of ground cinnamon, a sprinkle of nutmeg, and a cinnamon stick.
I have made this recipe two since since I learned it from Altagracia and it has been a hit!