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Ponche con Flor de Jamaica - Mulled Hibiscus

Serves

9 x 180ml plus fruit

Cooks In

overnight soak

Fragrant, warming Ponche Navideño is served at posadas (parties) and Christmas Eve during the Mexican Christmas period. The smell of cinnamon, sweet fruit and citrus emanates from the simmering pot making you feel very Christmassy indeed. This ponche has hibiscus as its base, its citrus flavours balancing the sweet fruit and sugar. It is spiced with cinnamon, cloves and star anise so it tastes very similar to mulled wine - and looks like it too! We have used quince and guava with orange peel, all available in the UK during the Christmas period. To add a kick to this ponche, making it . We have added Mexican Charando Rum to give it a kick, making it “ponche con piquete”, it's mellow flavours mingling perfectly.

Method

Place the hibiscus flowers and water in a saucepan, cover and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool, overnight is best. 

Then strain the liquid, discard the flowers and put the liquid back into the pot. Remove the zest of the orange in one long peel, add to the pot along with the spices and sugar, bring to a simmer, partially covered. 

Peel, core and dice the quince into 1.5-2cm cubes. Add to the pot and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Chop the guavas into similar size pieces, when the quince is soft add the guavas. Simmer until fragrant and tasty. If desired add more sugar. 

To make 'ponche con piquete' add rum or tequila when the ponche is off the stove, about 1 cup or to taste.