Cola de Mono

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This drink does not contain cola, nor is it a cure for mono. It means "monkey's tail".

It's a traditional Chilean yuletide drink, a counterpart to our egg nog. There are as many recipes for this drink as there are for egg nog. The main ingredients are sweetened milk, strong coffee, aguardiente or pisco, and aromatic spices.

Compare the two recipes below: the first is the most commonly known, and the second is Rosa Parra's secret recipe (our preferred). Note that Rosa's recipe uses sweetened condensed milk. Any Chilean recipe that calls for sweetened milk or cream (custard, tiramisu, manjar, etc.) has a quick variation that uses canned condensed milk.

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Cola de Mono

*Makes 16 glasses*

2 q milk
c sugar
2 sticks cinnamon
8 cloves
1 c café espresso
t nutmeg
2 c aguardiente*

Bring milk to a boil in a saucepan, stirring. Reduce heat and add sugar, cinnamon, and cloves, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, stir in espresso, and allow to cool to room temperature. Strain (or remove cinnamon sticks and cloves) and add nutmeg and aguardiente. Refrigerate. Serve chilled in 4oz stemware.

Rosita's Cola de Mono

*Serves 16*

3 c water
2 sticks cinnamon
6 cloves
1 can (14oz/400g) sweetened condensed milk
1 c espresso coffee (or 3 T Nescafé Clásico brewed in 1 c water) 1 t pure vanilla extract
2 c pisco, aguardiente, eau de vie, or aquavit

Bring water, cinnamon sticks, and cloves to a boil in a large pot and reduce to simmer for 10 minutes. Strain. Stir in condensed milk, coffee and vanilla. Allow to cool, then chill. Stir in liquor, and chill again before serving.

*May substitute pisco, grappa, eau de vie, or aquavit