Saturday was one of those English days that combined Winter and Spring in one. Our Brazilian friend Vanessa decided to take the cold and gloom head on by cooking up some Quentão which literally means Hot Stuff. It's a sort of hot rum punch, made with Cachaça, a distilled spirit made in Brazil from sugarcane juice. Local nicknames for Cachaça include bafo de tigre (tiger breath) and abre coração (heart opener) which give you some idea of what we're dealing with here.
It is a sweet drink with a lovely heat running through it, from the cinnamon and ginger as well as from the spirit, and it should be drunk very hot. Don't forget the apple chunks which give it a lovely freshness.
Needless to say, as soon as we began to sip our drinks the sun came out and Spring sprang all around.
Here is Vanessa's recipe in Portuguese as well as English.
Receta de Quentão Quentão (Hot Stuff)
1 garrafa de cachaça (600ml) 1 bottle of Cachaça
600ml de água 500ml water
250g de açúcar 250g sugar
casca de 2 laranjas peel of 2 oranges
casca de 1 limão peel of 1 lemon
50g de gengibre em pedacinhos 75g ginger
cravo-da-india a gusto cloves to taste (we used 2)
canela de pau a gusto cinnamon stick to taste (we used 2)
1 maçã cortada em pedacinhos 1 chopped apple