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It’s time to get punchy

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Even though it is now fall, there is still a good variety of fruits available for making a festive bowl of punch.


Many people are gathering for parties at this time, and it is always fun to have a punch bowl for people to gather around when they are thirsty. Since a lot of the gatherings involve children, the recipes for punch are alcohol-free. I must admit, those are the types I tend to go for the most.

Luckily, there is still a lot of fresh fruit in the stores, so if you like to garnish a punch bowl with sliced or cut up fruit, you have quite a selection to choose from. I think fruit adds to the flavor as well as eye appeal.

Stay safe, stay warm and have fun as we enjoy another fall season.

Hot apple cider punch

3 1/2 cups apple cider or juice

2 tablespoons sugar

1 3-inch cinnamon stick

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon whole cloves

1 orange, cut into wedges

3 cups orange juice

3 cups unsweetened pineapple juice

1. In a large saucepan, mix cider or juice, sugar, cinnamon stick and nutmeg; bring to a boil then reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, insert whole cloves into the peels side of the orange wedges; add to the cider mixture.

3. Stir in orange and pineapple juices and heat mixture. Discard cinnamon stick and serve the punch warm. Makes about 12 servings.

Sparkling cranberry punch

2 quarts cranberry juice cocktail

1 quart sparkling water (flavored unsweetened ones are fine)

1 can (16-oz.) pink lemonade frozen concentrate (thawed)

1. In a large container, combine the cranberry juice cocktail, sparkling water and the thawed pink lemonade concentrated. Add ice, if desired. Stir and serve.

Green punch

Even though the fruit is optional, it does make for a festive touch.

4 cups water

4 tablespoons Country Time lemonade powder mix

4 cups green berry Hawaiian Punch

2 limes, thinly sliced, optional

1 Granny Smith apple, seeded and diced, optional

2 kiwis, peeled and thinly sliced, optional

1 star fruit, thinly sliced, optional

1 cup green grapes, sliced in half, optional

1. In a large pitcher, add the water and lemonade powder, whisk until dissolved. Add Hawaiian Punch and mix until combined. Add fruits. Mix well before serving.

Pineapple orange and banana punch

You can make this ahead and add the soda later.

5 bananas

1 can (46-oz.) pineapple juice

1 can (12-oz.) frozen orange juice concentrate

1 can (12-oz.) frozen pink lemonade concentrate

2 bottles (2-liters each) Sprite, 7-Up or similar soda

1. Blend bananas in a blender with some of the pineapple juice, frozen orange juice concentrate and frozen pink lemonade concentrate. Pour into a large bowl.

2. Mix in the remainder of the pineapple juice, frozen orange juice and frozen pink lemonade into the bowl.

3. Pour punch into gallon plastic zippered bags or large containers. Label and freeze.

4. To serve: Place frozen punch into large punch bowl. Use a knife to carefully cut the frozen punch into smaller pieces. Mash, then slowly stir in half of a 2-liter bottle of Sprite or 7-Up. Continue mashing, stirring and adding in Sprite or 7-Up until it’s a slushy consistency. (Pour in about equal parts of frozen punch to soda.)

Raspberry sherbet punch

I wasn’t going to include a sherbet punch, thinking everyone is bored with those, but I do like them and maybe there will be some others who like them too.

2 liters lemon-lime soda (something like Sprite)

1/2 gallon raspberry sherbet

2 tablespoons lime juice

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1. In a large punch bowl, mix half of the lemon lime soda, all of the lime juice, and lemon juice together.

2. Top with scoops of raspberry sherbet.

3. Pour remaining lemon-lime soda over the sherbet. Serve immediately.

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