Milk Punch Clarified Cocktail Recipe

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Clarified milk punch is the kind of scientific sleight of hand that feels far too contemporary to be centuries old. It challenges our perceptions and preconceived notions, showcasing the transformative power of ingredients and techniques. Despite its humble ingredient list, the end result is a liquid marvel, devoid of colour but bursting with flavour.

Serves: 12-16

Prep time: 1 Minutes

Nutrition: 165 Calories 


  • 180 ml lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 400 ml granulated sugar
  • 500 ml pineapple juice or juice of 1 pineapple
  • 6 cloves
  • 20 coriander seeds
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 480 ml cognac
  • 480 ml rum
  • 120 ml Arrack
  • 240 ml strong brewed green tea
  • 1L boiling water
  • 1L whole milk
  • Freshly grated nutmeg for garnish (optional)



  1. Combine the lemon zest, cloves, coriander, and cinnamon with the cognac, rum, and Arrack in a large container and allow to sit at room temperature for a minimum of three hours, or overnight, to infuse. Strain out all of the solids and discard.
  2. Add the sugar, pineapple juice, lemon juice, green tea, and boiling water to the spirits mixture. Stir until the sugar is fully dissolved and all of the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
  3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, bring the milk to a bare simmer. As soon as the top starts to shimmer, remove it from heat.
  4. Pour the heated milk into a large container, then pour the spirits mixture into the heated milk (it’s important to pour the spirits into the milk rather than the other way around, which will result in a mess of smaller curds that don’t filter out). It should begin to curdle almost immediately.
  5. Allow the mixture to cool, then set in the refrigerator, ideally overnight. The mixture can be clarified sooner, but the overnight rest allows the flavors to develop and ensures that the cocktail won’t become cloudy when refrigerated, the way iced tea sometimes can.
  6. The next day, set a jelly strainer bag over a large Chemex or glass container. Jelly strainer bags are available at most cookware stores or online. In a pinch, a clean, white cotton T-shirt or pillowcase works well. Do not use coffee filters or cheesecloth, which will absorb too much of the cocktail and dramatically slow down the process. Remember that the milk proteins in the curds, not the fibers in the filter, are what clarify the liquid—you only want to provide a loose framework that allows the nest of curds to form at the bottom.
  7. Very slowly and carefully pour the curdled mixture in its entirety into the jelly strainer bag. It should flow very quickly at first, then slow to a trickle as curds form a nest at the bottom of the strainer and the casein proteins form a natural filtration system.
  8. When all of the liquid has passed through the jelly strainer bag, very carefully pour it through the jelly strainer again. Pour slowly so as not to break up the nest of curds at the bottom of the strainer.
  9. Repeat this step two to three more times until the desired level of clarity is achieved.
  10. At this point, the clarified milk punch can be poured over ice and served immediately, or bottled in sterilized, air-tight containers and stored for up to six months in the refrigerator. Garnish with nutmeg, if desired.

Category: Drinks Cuisine: Cocktail

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