The Passion Fruits

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O.K. The Fresh Fruit is functioning at moderate capacity today. I hosted a cocktail reception/gathering at my home last night for some local journalists and made the following punch which packs quite a bit of, well, punch.

This was my first foray into punch making/serving and it made me feel a bit like a 50′s house frau. A similar experience whenever I make a bundt cake–what am I, going to the PTA?

Anyhoo, I think the concoction turned out decently. I have to give myself some props here as quite a bit of labor went into this: the day prior, I was up until 2 a.m. muddling–half-naked– varying citruses and fresh ginger.  Hey, a fruit has to do what a fruit has to do.

Luke came by last night and prepared the cheese and fruit plates along with a very tasty date appetizer–recipe will come soon.

The punch is courtesy of Scott Palmer, the beverage director at Dino’s Restaurant here in D.C. Scott is fine mixologist and if you are ever up in Cleveland Park, do stop by and try his cocktails.

Don’t shortchange the ice step in this recipe. The punch was pretty cool to look at with this giant frozen orb buoyant in the rum. I think I even saw Leo…

Three Sisters’ Punch (named so because of the 3 islands the rum’s come from)
serves 20-30

1 750 ml bottle of amber rum (I use Neisson’s Amber Sous Bois)
1 750 ml bottle of light rum (I use Cruzan)
1/3 750 ml bottle (250ml) of Velvet Falernum or a spiced rum
6 oranges (3 peeled and juiced, 3 sliced)
6 lemons (3 peeled and juiced, 3 sliced)
20 limes (3 peeled and juiced, 3, sliced, 14 juiced)
1 knob of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1⁄2 cup of superfine sugar
ginger ale
dry sparkling wine
large block of ice (freeze filtered water in a bowl that is 1/3 the size of your punch bowl overnight)

In a medium-sized bowl, muddle the citrus peels, ginger and sugar with a few dashes of bitters (I use Fee Brothers Old Fashioned Bitters). Add to punch bowl. Add all of the liquors and fruit juices and stir until sugar is dissolved. Add sliced fruit. Chill in refrigerator for at least an hour, but overnight is best, to fully develop the flavors. When ready to serve, place the large ice block in the bowl and add 1 liter of ginger ale and a 1⁄2 bottle (375 ml) of sparkling wine and stir. Have plenty of ginger ale and sparkling wine for guests to add to their liking, as this drink is a tad strong. Serve over ice.

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