You can’t ring in the New Year without some festive beverage! Champagne is the most common, but I think punch should be made popular again. 🙂
The history of punch is quite fascinating. It’s the common story of a recipe being created out of necessity. The delicious beverage with its exotic ingredients can be traced all the way back to poor British sailors.
The British sailors working for the East Indian Company routinely ran out of beer before they could make it to India and Persia. Or it would spoil before they arrived. When they got there, they were ready for a good long drink. But India did not have the ingredients for beer. Instead they had exotic ingredients like coconuts, limes, lemons, spices and rum. With these, the British sailors created punch.
They brought this delicious beverage back to England with them and it was soon introduced into the inns and taverns as a wonderful, cheap alcoholic drink.
From there, the Victorians took a hold of the drink and turned it into the non-alcoholic beverage that we typically see today.
The word “punch” is believed to come from a Sanskrit or Hindi word meaning “five”. But punch can have almost any type of ingredient in it and adding alcohol makes it truly authentic.
If you are looking for some good historic punch recipes to try to help ring in the New Year with a little something extra special, here is a great list of classic and modern recipes!