Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Quaker Punch: Now! With Rhubarb

Let's raise a glass to one year of Seasonal Ontario Food (on line)!

I found the original version of this recipe in The Canadian* Woman's Cookbook, which was first published sometime in the 1930's, at least in Canada. It contained a recipe for "Quaker Punch", which gave me a good laugh - is that a triple entendre?

Obviously I had to try it, and it turned out that it was in fact excellent. However, it called for 3 lemons and 3 oranges, which is not all that Canadian. I thought I would try Ontari-izing it by replacing the citrus with rhubarb extract. Nummy! I'm giving you both versions though, so you can make it either way.

2 litres (4 to 8 servings)
12 hours - 15 minutes prep time

Quaker Punch made with tea, ginger, mint and rhubarb
Quaker Punch: Now! With Rhubarb
1 large bunch (8 to 12 stalks) rhubarb
1 litre water
2 tea bags
3-4 sprigs fresh mint
1 tablespoon peeled, chopped fresh ginger
1 litre boiling water
1/2 cup sugar

Wash and trim the rhubarb, and cut it into pieces about an inch in length. Put it in a pot with 1 litre of water, and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain the rhubarb, keeping the liquid and discarding the pulp (it should be pretty tasteless at this point.)

Meanwhile, put the tea bags, mint and ginger in a 1-litre canning jar (or any other vessel you like, although this is the easiest for measuring.) Fill it up with boiling water. Cover, and let steep for 6 or 7 minutes. Strain, again discarding the solids and keeping the liquid. Mix in the sugar and the rhubarb extract. Taste, and add a little more sugar if you think it needs it, but keep in mind it will taste sweeter once it is cold.

Let cool, and chill well. Serve over ice, garnished with mint. You may wish to add a squirt of lemon juice if you would like it to be a little sharper.

Original Quaker Punch
2 tea bags
3-4 sprigs fresh mint
1 tablespoon peeled, chopped fresh ginger
1 litre boiling water
1/2 cup sugar
3 lemons
3 oranges
1 to 2 cups cold water

Put the tea bags, mint and ginger in a 1-litre canning jar (or any other vessel you like, although this is the easiest for measuring.) Fill it up with boiling water. Cover, and let steep for 6 or 7 minutes. Strain, discarding the solids and keeping the liquid. Mix in the sugar.

Meanwhile, squeeze the juice from the lemons and oranges. Mix the juice with the punch, and add 1 cup cold water. Taste the punch, and adjust the sugar if needed. Also add more water if it seems too strong. (Keep in mind: it will be sweeter when cold, and if you are serving it over ice you may want it a tad strong.)





*It's packed up somewhere at the moment, but I believe that somewhere on the first page it said "an imprint of The American Woman's Cookbook." Americans have been thinking they can pull this sort of shit for a long time, and the sad thing is they seem to get away with it.

3 comments:

cakewardrobe said...

Perfect to bring to my upcoming BBQ party!!!

chiff0nade said...

I live in a trailer park in Clearwater Florida and we love Quaker Punch. I serve it often at our picnic area here on hot afternoons.

But with rhubarb? Great idea. I will try your recipe tomorrow and think find out what my neighbors think about it.

Canine Diamond said...

I'm definitely trying it with rhubarb, but don't blame us if we get away with it--y'all are the ones that fell for it. I mean, it was written right on the front page, after all. ;-)