1 hour, 15 minutes plus chilling time for the ponche
FOR THE RECORD:
Ponche Villa recipe: In Wednesday's Food section, a recipe titled Ponche Villa, which accompanied an article about the fruit tejocote, included the wrong nutritional values. Each cocktail has 150 calories; 0 protein; 22 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 0 fat; 0 cholesterol; 22 grams sugar; 7 mg. sodium.
Adapted from a recipe by John Rivera Sedlar with Julian Cox. Sedlar writes, "I've always enjoyed this classic holiday 'ponche.' I like how it doesn't have that cloying over-spiced sweet character of the usual holiday spice drinks. The
really add depth and character to the beverage." Sedlar prefers jarred tejocotes from
, which he says are not too sweet. He also prefers Del Maguey's Crema de Mezcal. Piloncillo is Mexican brown sugar; it and sugar cane, tamarind pods and dried hibiscus blossoms are available at Mexican groceries.
For the ponche:
1 1/4 pounds fresh whole tejocotes
1 pound piloncillo
12 prunes, halved
1 pound peeled sugar cane, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound canela cinnamon sticks, broken up
1 1/2 pounds guavas, quartered
2 pears, quartered (preferably Anjou)
2 apples, quartered (preferably Gala)
10 tamarind pods, each peeled of its tough outer shell
1 gallon water
12 dried hibiscus blossoms
1. In a medium, heavy-bottom pot,
mix together the tejocotes, piloncillo, prunes, sugar cane, canela, guavas, pears, apples, tamarind pods, water and hibiscus blossoms. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until the liquid darkens and reduces by about half, about 1 hour.
2. Remove from heat
and pass through a mesh strainer to make the ponche (the mixture will not be entirely clear). Discard all the ingredients except the ponche and the tejocotes. Place the simmered tejocotes in a small bowl with ponche to cover and chill; these will be used as a garnish in the final coctels. Cool the ponche and refrigerate for one night to mature the flavor. This makes a generous 1 1/2 quarts ponche.
Each coctel and assembly
2 ounces ponche
1 ounce mezcal, preferably Del Maguey's Crema de Mezcal or Chi Chi Capa
2 dashes Fee Bros. West Indian orange bitters
1 tejocote, skewered with a wooden or sugar cane skewer
1 thin slice of Fuyu persimmon
1 tamarind bean, peeled of its outer bark
In a cocktail shaker,
combine the ponche, mezcal and bitters. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with the skewered tejocote, persimmon slice and tamarind bean.