I was looking for another recipe in my recipe box, and I came upon my punch recipe. I say “my” possessively, but also with the understanding that most punch recipes are pretty similar and made of the same stuff, so probably there are half a million other punch recipes exactly like this one. And if so, don’t tell me, because I like thinking of this one as mine, and I DID invent it, through MUCH trial-and-error, even if I wasn’t the firsty-first to do so.
It is particularly good with Thanksgiving foods. It’s fizzy-but-not-too-fizzy, it’s a little tart and not too sweet, and it goes very nicely with savory and salt. I made it once for a large family-reunion Thanksgiving, and my aunt said, “Hey, this is really good! I have to admit, I was not sure about it when I saw what you were putting into it, but it’s GOOD!”
(I’d spiked her cup, so no wonder.)
(No, I didn’t.)
(Or did I?)
Swistle’s Punch Recipe
2 parts cranberry juice cocktail, light or regular
1 part orange juice
1 part grapefruit juice
2 parts clear diet soda
So, that means that if you start with a 2-quart bottle of cranberry juice, you’ll also need 1 quart (4 cups) of orange juice, 1 quart (4 cups) of grapefruit juice, and a 2-liter of diet 7-up or diet Sprite or something.
If you are a family of four and don’t think you’re going to drink a quart and a half of punch each, you can start with 2 cups of cranberry juice and add 1 cup of orange juice, 1 cup of grapefruit juice, and 2 cups of clear soda. Or you can make it for just your own self: use a quarter-cup measure twice with cranberry juice, once with orange juice, once with grapefruit juice, and twice with soda. The 2-1-1-2 is the part to remember, and change the measuring device depending on how many people are going to drink it.
If you aren’t sure how many people are going to drink punch, I suggest mixing juices together in the right proportions and then adding the soda to small batches (say, a pitcher’s worth) as you go along: if it’s all mixed together, it’s no good once the soda goes flat (though you can somewhat perk it up by adding more soda); but if you have them separate, you can keep the juices for a long time (save the empty juice bottles to store it in) and mix it with soda later as needed (2 measures of juice to 1 measure of soda).
You can also make fun ice cubes, if you make sure you have extra juice. Put a mandarin orange segment and/or cranberry and/or maraschino cherry in each little ice cube slot, and then fill up the rest of each slot with one of the juices. I do some cubes of each juice, because that’s pretty. Those can be for each person’s individual glass: one grapefruit cube, one orange cube, and one cranberry cube—so pretty. You can also make larger versions for the pitcher with a cupcake tin, or if you have a punch bowl you can make a huge juice-ring with a bundt pan or 1-quartish bowl (you can LAYER the juices for PRETTINESS!).