Wednesday, August 10, 2011

HUG Mixology: Get Punched!

Our perception of cocktail punches most likely originates from a terrible teenage comedy involving a school dance, an unsupervised punch bowl and a toublemaker with a flask.

Although better punches do pack some (or a lot of) booze; throughout history, cocktail punches have been the complex and quenching drink of sailors, explorers and party-savvy home entertainers.

Punches are a no-fuss alternative for party imbibements - it's all pre-prepped, little mess, and self-serve.

Forget about breaking out the whole home bar for your next barbecue or cocktail soiree - we'll show you how to prep a batch of classic cocktail punch to "spike" up the party. 

The Punch Bowl
The punch bowl should be a showstopping centerpiece of the party table. It's your chance to show off your unique vintage find or dust off that wedding gift waiting for the day to be handy. 

If you're shopping for a punch bowl, it's worth your while to check out Queen West vintage shops for classic champagne ice bowls or luck out with a find from BYOB Cocktail Boutique. If you're looking for something new and polished, let us suggest this piece from Williams-Sonoma, which doubles as a cake stand for 2-in-1 functionality.
The Ice
First and foremost... No cubed ice in the punch bowl! It will melt and water-down your punch. One option is to keep the ice in a separate bowl with a scoop next to the punch bowl which keep in line with the DIY theme of a punch. 

If you're feeling 'ballsy', you can chill the punch with a giant ball or block of ice. With a large piece of ice you can still chill the punch with ice in the bowl but with a lot less melting and a big "wow" factor. It's as easy as making a water balloon (be sure to push out any air), placing the balloon in a freezer-safe bowl and freezing the water balloon overnight.  Check it out here

The Recipe - Planter`s Punch
1 x 750mL bottle of dark Jamaican Rum (like Appleton VX)
1 x 750mL bottle of orange liqueur (Triple Sec, Cointreau)
1 cup (8 oz) of pineapple juice
1 cup (8 oz) of orange juice
1 cup (8 oz) of limeade concentrate
2 cup (16 oz) of lemonade concentrate
Combine all ingredients in a punch bowl.  Garnish with fresh seasonal fruit.
--- Michelle Tham

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