July 26, 2015 at 6:44 pm
· Filed under Cocktails & Spirits, Food Holidays, Recipes
Pisco Portón, one of the finest pisco
brands. Photo courtesy Pisco Portón.
Pisco (PEE-skoe), the national spirit of Peru, is celebrated with two holidays each year: Pisco Day on the fourth Sunday of July, and Pisco Sour Day on the first Saturday of February, honoring Peru’s national drink.
So for Pisco Day, here are two pisco punch recipes that aren’t the Pisco Sour. Punches are good for a crowd, can be made a day in advance, and are easy to pour from a pitcher.
Make the punch a day in advance, you can chill it thoroughly in the fridge so less ice will be required (it dilutes the drink as it melts). The larger the cubes, the slower they melt.
RECIPE: EASY PISCO PUNCH
Peels of three lemons, each cut into spirals with a vegetable peeler
¾ cup sugar
¾ cup fresh-squeezed, strained lemon juice*
1 bottle (750 ml) pisco
1 quart cold water
Garnish: 1 star fruit
*Juice the three lemons after you cut the peels
1. MUDDLE the lemon peels and sugar together and let sit for at least 90 minutes. Muddle the lemon and sugar again, then stir in the lemon juice.
2. ADD the pisco and the water and stir. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.
3. CUT the star fruit into ¼ to ½ inch slices right before serving. To serve, pour into a glass pitcher and float the star fruit slices. Add ice cubes as needed.
RECIPE: PINEAPPLE PISCO PUNCH
1 bottle (750ml) pisco
16 ounces pineapple juice
6 ounces simple syrup (Simple Syrup Recipe)
½ fresh pineapple in cubes
7 ounces fresh strawberries, diced
1. MIX all ingredients in punch bowl or pitcher.
2. SERVE in rocks glasses; garnish with pineapple and strawberry squares and mint.
Pineapple Pisco Punch. Photo and recipe courtesy Pisco Portón.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF PISCO
As Spanish emigrés settled in Latin America, they needed to find local substitutes for products that took many months to come from Europe.
Pisco, a replacement for European-distilled brandy, was first made in the 16th century from grapes grown in the fertile Pisco Valley.
While most pisco brands imported to the U.S. are Peruvian, you can alo find some that are made in Chile.
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