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New Year’s Warm Fruit Punch

10 servings
Ponche de Año Nuevo


  • 8 ounces tejocotes or crabapples, fresh or preserved
  • 3 quarts (12 cups) water
  • 2 true or ceylon cinnamon sticks
  • 8 ounces piloncillo, about 1 cup packed if grated, or dark brown sugar
  • 1 pound sugarcane, peeled and cut into pieces of 4" to 5” in height and ½" width, or thawed from frozen
  • 8 ounces yellow Mexican guavas, cut into bite-sized chunks, or thawed frozen
  • 2 apples of your choice, peeled, cored, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 1/2 cup pitted prunes, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup raisins, or to taste
  • Rind of an orange
  • 1/2 cup rum, sugar cane liquor, brandy or tequila, optional

To Prepare

  • In a medium saucepan, bring a couple cups water to a boil. Add the tejocotes, remove from heat and let them sit for 5 minutes, drain. If using the preserved tejocotes, just drain. Once cool enough to handle, peel them, cut them in half and discard their seeds.
  • In a large pot or clay pot, pour 12 cups water with the cinnamon and piloncillo, set over medium-high heat. Once it comes to a simmer, reduce heat to medium and add the sugar cane, along with the guavas, apples, prunes, apricots, raisins and tejocotes. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring every once in a while. Add the orange rind and simmer for another 10 minutes.
  • If you will take your ponche spiked, this is when you add the rum. Stir and cover until ready to serve.
  • Discard the cinnamon and orange rind before serving. Serve in mugs, trying to add a bit of each fruit.