My day usually starts of with one or two good size mugs of French pressed coffee or a couple of shots of espresso. Aside from the caffeine kick, I love the flavour of coffee. If for some reason I’m out of coffee (which is extremely rare) I’ll usually opt for some cranberry juice or something not too sweet. My beverage choices in the morning are relatively limited. Basically, I am a coffee addict.
When you travel to New Orleans and go for breakfast at Cafe Adelaide or Brennan’s they’ll hand you a Brandy Milk Punch to get your day started. It doesn’t wake you up like coffee does, but it doesn’t seem to make you sleepy either. It just seems to take the edge off the morning, especially if you’ve indulged the night before. I wouldn’t recommend a Brandy Milk Punch as the way to start every morning, but it should be an option at a Saturday or Sunday brunch.
How to Make a Brandy Milk Punch
2 oz Brandy
3 oz Half and Half Table Cream
1 tsp Superfine Sugar
Garnish: 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
Shake brandy, half and half cream, and sugar with ice and strain into an Old Fashioned glass. Sprinkle nutmeg on top and serve.
As to the history of this drink, I’ve found a recipe that is very similar in Jerry Thomas’ How to Mix Drinks. There is a slight modification with the addition of rum, and the use of milk instead of half n’ half, but they look pretty similar. I’m sure the history of this drink goes back much further than Jerry Thomas.
Milk Punch (from Jerry Thomas)
(Use large bar-glass.)
Take 1 teaspoonful of fine white sugar.
1 wine-glass of brandy.
½ wine-glass of Santa Cruz rum.
Small lump of ice.
Fill with milk, shake the ingredients well together, strain into a large glass, and grate a little nutmeg on top.
* Photograph courtesy of Brennan’s