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Ponche de Navidad / Christmas Punch (19– and 1994)

December 23, 2010

by Tara Schmidt

Ponche de Navidad / Christmas Punch

Ponche de Navidad

Cold weather and long winter evenings make this the perfect time to gather some friends and make holiday punch!  Pull out your prettiest mugs and serve this punch with a few pieces of the cooked fruit, especially the raisins, prunes or dried apricots.  The flavors seep into the plumped fruit until those sweet bites become an accompanying dessert.    Here are two options for keeping your spirits bright this year:

Castilla, S. Jesús. Asi se cocina en Muzquiz. Saltillo, México : Castillas Impresores, [19–]. [TX716 .M4 A849]

This first recipe makes a wonderful cinnamon-apple cider-like drink.  Other punch recipes suggest that apricots or kumquats can be substituted for tejocote.  Dried apricots are worth adding for the treat they are to eat when the punch is done cooking!

Original Recipe/Receta Original:

Ponche de Navidad, Pp. 4 

El Ponche

El Ponche

5 litros de agua
1 kg. de guayaba cortada
1 kg. de tamarindo limpio
2 pedazos de caña en trocitos
½ kg. de tejocote
2 paquetes de ciruela pasa
¼ kg. de pasas de uva
1 raja grande de canela
Azúca al gusto

Se pone a hervir poniendo primero la fruta mas dura, agregando el azúcar que se desea según lo dulce que se quiera preparar; despues el resto de la fruta, se puede servir agregando un poco de brandy o solo si se prefiere se sirve caliente.

Translated Recipe/Receta Traducida:

Christmas Punch, Pp. 4



La fruta y la canela

La fruta y la canela

5 liters of water
1 kg. chopped guava
1 kg. tamarind, cleaned
Two pieces of sugar cane, cut into small pieces
½ kg. tejocote
2 packages of prunes
¼ kg. raisins
1 large cinnamon stick
Sugar to taste

Boil the harder fruit first, adding sugar to achieve the desired sweetness as it is cooking.  Then, add the rest of the fruit.  The punch can be served with a little brandy added, or just by itself if you prefer.  Serve warm.


Marshall, Katarin, El Gran Libro de la Cocina Navidadeña. México: Editoial Libra, 1994. Pp. 28. [TX739.2 .C45 M37 1994]

The hibiscus in this recipe turns the punch a beautiful deep red.  I did add kumquats to this recipe and I think the citrus helped cut some of the sweetness of the flavors.  Definitely serve with rum.

A few notes on the sugar cones:  the four suggested sugar cones make this punch extremely sweet.  One friend described this as liquid jam. If I made this again, I would probably start with two sugar cones and taste for sweetness.  I toasted my sugar cones on a comal over the stove until they were melted and caramelized.  Be very careful, however, as this can easily become an extremely hot and overflowing disaster.  Also, I would recommend toasting the sugar at the very end of cooking the fruit to keep the sugar from hardening and becoming a mess.

Original Recipe/Receta Original:

Ponche de Navidad, Pp. 4





3 litros de agua
¼ de taza de flor de jamaica
12 ciruelas pasas
6 guayabas partidas en cuarterones
12 tejocotes
2 cañas partidas en 4 tiras
50 gr. De pasitas
100 gr. De orejones de chabacano
2 rajas grandes de canela
4 piloncillos
1 botella de aguardiente de caña

Se enjuaga ligeramente la jamaica y se lava bien la fruta.  En el comal se tuesta la caña hasta que oscurezca.

Se coloca el agua en una olla de barro a fuego mediano hasta que hierva.  Se añaden los ingredientes, excepto el piloncillo y la canela; se deja hervir a fuego lento hasta cocer la fruta con una espumadera se retira la flor de jamaica, para que no amargue.  Se agrega el piloncillo y la canela y se deja hervir unos 15 minutos.

Se deja reposar una media hora y se vuelve a poner a lama baja para mantenerlo caliente en el momento de servir en jarritos de barro o tazas de ponche.  Se pone un tejocote, una ciruela pasa, pasitas y se sirve una medida de aguardiente.

Translated Recipe/Receta Traducida:

Christmas Punch, Pp. 4



El Ponche

El Ponche

3 l. water
¼ cup hibiscus flowers
12 prunes
6 guavas in quarters
12 tejocotes
2 sugar cane split into 4 strips
50 gr. raisins
100 gr. apricots
2 large cinnamon sticks
4 piloncillos (sugar cones)
1 bottle of rum

Rinse the hibiscus and wash the fruit well.  Toast the sugar cones in a comal until dark.

Place the water in a pot over medium heat until boiling. Add all ingredients except sugar and cinnamon, and simmer over low heat until fruit is cooked.  Remove the hibiscus with a slotted spoon, to avoid bitterness. Add the brown sugar and cinnamon and simmer for 15 minutes.

Let the punch stand for half an hour and then return to low heat to keep warm till serving in ceramic pitchers or punch cups.  Serve each cup with a tejocote, a prune, raisins and a measure of rum.


One Comment leave one →
  1. Paulina Baltazar (Morena) permalink
    December 28, 2011 2:24 pm

    muy buena receta

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