My Abuela Elena’s Ponche Navideño {Christmas Punch}

Photography By: Gabriela Cárdenas​​

The season of Las Posadas is one of the most magical in Mexico. 


During this time of year, homes are traditionally filled with a comforting aroma of tamalitos (small tamales), colorful star-shaped piñatas, and the sweet taste of ponche Navideño (Christmas punch).

A photo from last Christmas in Mexico (2019) Abuela Elena and I were about to have dinner with our family.​​

Ponche navideño is an ideal drink to serve during Navidad as it can be served “con piquete” (alcoholic) for adults or as a non-alcoholic version for los niños (the kids).


This year, I would like to honor the season by sharing this ponche Navideño recipe given to me by my grandma Elena. 


She is thrilled to know that I am sharing this recipe with you all––so I hope you enjoy it. Plus, I promise your house will smell amazing!

shop glassware

Ponche Navideño



Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yields: 4 beverages




tips

  • The fruit can be roughly chopped, it doesn´t have to be cut in small pieces.

  • If you can´t find one of the ingredients, feel free to substitute it with a different fruit of your preference.

  • Some people like adding oranges, raisins and pears to the ponche. My recipe comes from Veracruz so we add tropical fruits like pineapple.

  • The piloncillo can be substituted with brown sugar.

  • You can use tamarind instead of hibiscus flower, although the color will be different.

  • Rum, mezcal or tequila can be used to serve the ponche with piquete (alcohol).

Photography By: Gabriela Cárdenas​​

Ingredients

  • 7 cups of water

  • 3.5 ounces (100 grams) piloncillo

  • 0.7 ounces (20 grams) of dried hibiscus flowers

  • 1 long cinnamon stick

  • 1 medium-sized guava chopped

  • 1 cup of chopped red apples

  • 1 cup of chopped pineapple

  • 0.265 pounds (120 grams) tejocotes

  • ½ cup roughly chopped prunes

  • 1 cup of peeled and roughly chopped sugar cane

  • Rum, mezcal or tequila (if serving the ponche with alcohol)

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Preparation

  1. Pour 6 cups of water into a large pot.
  2. Add the dried hibiscus flowers, cinnamon stick, piloncillo and boil for 10 minutes or until the piloncillo has dissolved.
  3. Remove the hibiscus flowers with the help of a spoon and add a cup of water.
  4. Add the tejocotes as these take longer to soften and simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Add the apples, sugar cane, pineapple, guava and prunes to the pot and simmer for 10 more minutes.
  6. Your ponche is ready to be served. Add a portion of the fruits and liquid in mugs and add the desired amount of “piquete” (alcohol) to your mug.






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About the Author

Gabriela Cárdenas

Gaby is a passionate home cook from Mexico. Life took her to Mumbai, India where she fell in love with the country, the food and her husband Jasdeep. She is the brains behind @thepunjaxican, an Instagram account where she shares her favorite Indian and Mexican dishes with her own Punjaxican (Punjabi + Mexican) recipes as a homage to both ethnicities. Punjaxican is the type of fusion recipes she makes at home when they are “ni muy muy ni tan tan” Indian or Mexican.

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