You may remember that, a few weeks ago, I mentioned the Mexican tradition of El Dia de Reyes (The Day of the Kings) and how the traditional bread, the rosca, had a baby figurine baked inside.  According to the custom, the person who finds the figurine is supposed to bring something for everyone on Candlemas, which takes place on February 2nd (today).

As luck would have it, when your friendly neighborhood Tea Sommelier took his first bite of the office rosca, he bit the baby.  This didn’t turn out too bad, though, since it gave me inspiration to create my newest hot tea cocktail, modeled after the Mexican cocktail Ponche.

I call it Crimson Ponche.  Salud!

how 'bout a nice crimson poncheCrimson Ponche

2 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and cut

3/4 cup raisins

1 pound guava, quartered

1/2 cup prunes

2 cups diced pineapple

1 1/2 cups demerera sugar (the “in the raw” kind)

4 (2-inch) pieces Mexican cinnamon

3 tablespoons Crimson Punch, dry

8 cups water

Tequila (recommended: Partida Reposado)

In a large pot, place the fruit, sugar, cinnamon, and 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil and lower heat and simmer for 1 hour. About 15 minutes before time is up, stir in tea leaves.

Strain and serve hot in mugs that have a healthy shot of tequila in them.