Once cherished Christmas trees now line the streets waiting for the garbage man. All the pretty lights are put away. Kids are back at school. It’s safe to listen to the radio again.
For many of us the Holiday Season ended just about the time our New Year’s hangovers wore off. But, as we’ve pointed out previously, the jolly times continue back home in St. Croix. Crucian Christmas Carnival festivities are about to reach a climax with tomorrow’s adult parade in Frederiksted. The festivities wrap up on Sunday and life gets back to normal Monday morning. Just enough time to enjoy one more staple Christmas libation. Tonight, let’s make it Coquito.
Closely related to Trinidad‘s Ponche de Creme and Egg Nog here in the U.S., Coquito is a must at Christmas time in many Latin countries. As with the Noche Buena pig roast tradition, though, we Crucians have adopted Coquito as a big part of our Holiday celebrations as well.
- 2 15-ounce cans cream of coconut
- 2 14-ounce cans condensed milk
- 6 ounces (or more) Cruzan White Rum
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon coconut (or vanilla) extract
During my Noche Buena party here in Fort Lauderdale, we had a couple bottles of the stuff that were purchased here, as well as the homemade mix pictured above. They were all excellent, but different in their own subtle ways. You see, there are lots of different ways to make Coquito.
Some methods call for boiling a few of the ingredients before blending and refrigeration. Others don’t involve any cooking at all. Sometimes eggs are used. Other times, none.
There was some boiling involved in producing the one above, but no blending… just a lot of vigorous shaking.
Overall, Coquito’s gotta’ have a nice blend of coconut, spices and rum. How much of each flavor to use is really according to individual taste. For instance, my friend who made this one paired a healthy amount of Cruzan Coconut Rum with regular Cruzan White to add more coconut flavor without sacrificing the potency. Pure genius, if you ask me.
Thankfully, I’ve got a good source for a unique homemade Coquito. If I was going to make a batch myself, though, I’d opt for this really easy recipe…
Mix everything in a blender. Put your mix in the fridge for about an hour. Serve. Raise one last toast to the Holidays.