There’s just something about a bowl of punch that announces, “Now it’s really a party!” Next time you’re entertaining, in addition to having a few bottles of red and white on hand, mix things up a bit with one of the following festive beverages. With or without alcohol, these sure-to-please punches will add some pizzazz to your next gathering.
Mint and peach punch
For this refreshing sip, start by blending 3 ripe peaches – skin and all – until smooth. In your punchbowl, mix the peach puree with two 750mL bottles of sparkling mineral water, the juice of one lemon, several fresh mint leaves, 1/4 cup honey and vodka to taste. (This punch is also delicious as an alcohol-free alternative.) The great thing about this recipe idea is that you can take the basic premise – fresh fruit puree mixed with bubbles – and go in any direction you choose. Swap the peaches for fresh or frozen raspberries, mangoes or another in-season stone fruit. And instead of mineral water, opt for ginger ale or sparkling wine.
There are countless interpretations of this favourite Spanish concoction. Here’s ours. In a large mixing bowl, combine a peeled and thinly sliced orange, a punnet of hulled and halved strawberries and a peeled and sliced apple with ½ cup Cointreau and ½ cup caster sugar. Cover and place in the fridge for a couple of hours to let the flavours mingle. Just before serving, transfer the soused fruit to your punchbowl, add two bottles of chilled sparkling shiraz and three cups of chilled lemonade. Toss in a tray or two of ice cubes and serve!
Top tip: To prettify your punch, try freezing strawberry halves, edible flowers or fruit puree into ice cubes. Drop these into your punchbowl just before serving.
‘She’ll be apples’ punch
Make a splash with this orchard in a punchbowl. Combine a 750mL bottle of chilled sparkling apple cider with 500mL chilled orange juice, two 750mL bottles of chilled ginger ale, ½ cup lemon juice and a splash of whisky to taste. For an extra dose of sweetness, add a little honey. Garnish with strips of orange peel, apple slices and mint leaves, and serve in glasses over ice.
After you’ve enjoyed the party and savoured your sweet sips, relax while Finish takes care of the clean-up for you. With Finish Quantum Apple & Lime Blast in your dishwasher, your glassware will be party-ready again in no time.