Thursday, July 15

rompope for real

Don Agapito says - try some rompope!!
It has been done. A liter of whole milk & 10 eggs later...I have come up with a yummy rompope prototype. I first tried this creamy beverage in Jaime's homepueblo and it's dangerously delicious. And when I say dangerous - I mean, don't drink this if you have high cholesterol. Here's the ingredient list:
•Ingredients to make a JELL-O flavor of choice - maybe raspberry or piña colada? (gelatin is optional but commonly eaten with rompope) Go ahead and make this whenever you can during the rompope process.

•1 liter of whole milk (4 1/4 cups)
•1 stick of cinnamon
•2/3 cups of white sugar
•10 egg yolks
•1/4 - 1/2 cups (to taste) of liquor of choice (cane alcohol, rum, brandy)

Alright - if you haven't been scared off by the contents of this delicacy - let's continue! In Mexico they have a vanilla gelatin that has a milk base (does that exist abroad?) so I started boiling milk for that alongside the whole milk for the rompope. As you let the milk heat up on a medium flame - toss in the sugar & cinnamon stick. You're going to let the milky mixture bubble up slightly then lower the heat to let it simmer for about 15 minutes. This is a good time to take out a book because you need to stir the milk regularly to prevent that icky film that milk likes to create when heated. Rompope likes a lot of attention - just FYI. I took out my current Michael Pollan book and wondered what he'd say about this eggy drink...
After 15 patient minutes of stirring - take the cinnamon sugar milk off the stove and let it cool to room temperature. This is a good time to break open your eggs and separate out the yolks. This was also the perfect moment for me to realize that I could try to make angel food cake with my leftover egg whites. Lesson learned: do NOT attempt to make angel food cake by manually beating the eggs without a whisk. Your dessert will be compact and nasty. Moving on...

Ok - milk is room temperature, right? Take out the cinnamon. Whip your eggs yolks for a second and then slowly pour them into the milk pot while stirring. Incorporate everything well and then return the rompope to the stove. Keep the heat niiiice and low. I kept the rompope on the heat only until I saw a little steam rising up - no simmering, no boiling (about 6 minutes - and don't forget to stir!). After cooking my eggs once inside my rompope - I had to be extra careful this time!  
You'll see the rompope thicken up a little bit while you heat it up this second time. However, the real thickening happens when you let it cool down. So after those 6 minutes of constant mixing (think of it as a little arm workout) - put your Latin eggnog on the counter and let it cool off. Try a little...delicious, riiiiight? 
Here's my rompope cooled down a bit and with a richer consistency. Now's the time to add the alcohol, yaaay! I used pure cane alcohol - but I next time I'm going to use a dark rum - I'm sure the flavor will much deeper with a little Bacardi Oro. Just keep adding & tasting until you think it's perfectly perked up. Throw it in the fridge and by the time your JELL-O is set, your rompope will be ready for enjoyment! I like to put a little gelatin in a teacup and cover it with my milky creation. Sunday morning, Tuesday night - anytime is a good time to nab a cup! Think I'm going to have some right now!  

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