The ultimate holiday cocktail is not Egg Nog, it’s Coquito

Need a break from busy holiday preparations? Looking for a nice strong cocktail to get you through a holiday party? Want to celebrate the holidays with something tropical?

I live in Florida, so the last question is one posed to me many times by friends and readers of my column. But I’m sure my frozen friends up north have the same tropical cravings when there’s two feet of snow on the ground.

Coquito is the answer to your holiday cocktail dreams. It originates from Puerto Rico and is traditionally served anytime from Thanksgiving until mid-January. Coquito literally translates to ‘little coconut.’ And a little taste of coconut is exactly what you’ll get in this yummy but potent drink.

People make comparisons between Egg Nog and Coquito. I think Coquito is very different from the same old nog we’ve been drinking for years.

Coquito is served cold and frothy. It contains coconut milk and rum among other ingredients. These two main flavors, along with the cold temperature it is served at, make it perfect for a warm Florida holiday.

I like to premix several bottles of Coquito to serve at parties. Then I don’t have to be behind the bar mixing drinks all night. I set up a cute little self serve bar and leave my guests to fill their glasses and garnish the drink themselves.

There are so many different recipes for Coquito. Some use raw eggs, much like traditional egg nog. I’ve chosen to share a version that does not use raw egg. It’s still delicious and easy to make.

So let’s sip some Coquito and have a happy exotic holiday!

Everyday Exotic Coquito

1 12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 14 oz. can coconut milk
1 15 oz. can coconut cream
3 cups silver Puerto Rican Rum
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground clove
1/4 teaspoon allspice

Mix all in a large container, mixing and shaking well. Decant into empty 750 ml liquor bottles and place in the fridge for at least two hours before serving. Shake bottle well just before serving.

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