The Sugar Free Coquito is something we stumbled upon when investigating milk substitutes. Why replace milk? Carbs. They don’t have much, but they do exist. We usually use heavy cream in lieu of actual milk, but that can add a viscosity that can be a little overwhelming if more than an ounce is called for.
Also, there are cocktails that call for 4 ounces of milk, which obviously rules out using the heavy cream.
While experimenting with Unsweetened Soy Milk, Unsweetened Almond Milk, and Unsweetened Coconut milk, we did unearth a recipe for a Coquito. A friend of mine keyed me in on a technique that they use in Puerto Rico, namely heating up the coconut milk and adding some spices. The traditional formulae call for rum or spiced rum, which this does not have. However, it can easily be added!
That being said, we added 10 dried cloves, two cinnamon sticks, and 2 cups of coconut milk into a pan, brought it up to a boil, then allowed it to simmer for 30 minutes. The first thing that you’ll notice is that it will make you abode smell absolutely wonderful while this is simmering! Freshly ground nutmeg can also be added. We omitted this in our recipe, but that is an error we will fix in any subsequent iterations.
Then, allow to cool. Since we are trying to make this a replacement for milk, we tried to copy the sweetness. Since regular skim milk has 13 gram of carbohydrates per 8 oz, we estimated that the simmered coconut milk should have the equivalent amount of splenda added. Doing a quick conversion led us to add two tablespoons of splenda. You’ll, of course, want to check the math against whatever volume you are making.
This was the perfect amount! It had such a good blend of flavors and we can’t wait to try it out in some new cocktails. We were even inspired enough to create a new cocktail! But more on that later…