Milk rum punch was a successful experiment.
During the mid to late 1700’s, most booze was rather harsh. Barrel aged beverages contained high levels of tannins causing off flavors. Ben Franklin, who had an affinity for good drink, is credited with using science to take the harshness and tannins out. Others credit various people. How it came about is really lost to history.
How the milk rum punch cocktail came about is really lost to history.
What is known, someone came up with the idea of using milk curds to filter out the harshness and tannins of alcoholic beverages. The recipe is simple but takes three or four days to complete. If part of it looks familiar, it is because you are making a form of ricotta.
The recipe, unchanged over the centuries uses milk, citrus, and a combination of rum, brandy, bourbon, or gin.
I searched for various recipes and used them to formulate my version of the milk rum punch.
You add citrus juice to hot milk, let it form curds, then add the alcohol. Cover and lit it sit for three to four days until the curds settle to the bottom. You strain it through cheese cloth. A final strain through a coffee filter produced a nice clear drink.
Warning, this drink tastes mild but is strong.
The recipe makes about one quart.
You should have some white, rice vinegar, or bottled lemon juice with citric acid (Should say on the label) hand in case the acidity level of the citrus is not high enough to curdle the milk. Just add a small splash to raise the acidity level to curdle the milk.
Note, this was done purely as an experiment. Even the cheapest booze is palatable today. You can make this just by adding citrus juice to the alcohol, then run the cocktail through a coffee filter once or twice.
1 pint half-half
Juice of 2 lemons
Juice of 2 limes
Juice of 1 medium to large red grapefruit or large orange.
1/2 pint rum
1/2 pint brandy
1/2 pint bourbon or gin
In a pot, heat milk on medium heat until it starts to bubble around the edges.
Add the citrus juices.
Lower heat to simmer until curds start to form.
Simmer for about five minutes.
Take off heat, let cool to room temperature, then add the alcohol.
Place into a clear container. Cover and refrigerate for three to four days- until the curds sink to the bottom and the concoction is clear.
Line two fine mesh strainers with cheese cloth and stack them over a mixing bowl. Carefully pour the mixture little at a time. Let it sit until all the liquid is strained out.
If the cocktail still looks milky, strain a second time through coffee filters.
Refrigerate and serve cold.
Keeps for two to three weeks in the refrigerator.