This Sunday I'll be back on NPR's Weekend Edition talking to Rachel Martin about daiquiris and pina coladas. Both drinks are heavy, overly sweet, and mostly bad most of the time. But it doesn't have to be this way.
As I'll explain, the daiquiri can be improved by returning it to its humble roots. The pina colada, however, needs more help.
Enter MSNBC's Rachel Maddow, an experienced mixologist, who came on The Sporkful a while back to talk about "the tragedy of the pina colada," as she put it.
Unlike the daiquiri, which was once simple and pure, the pina colada was never pure. Its base -- Coco Lopez Cream of Coconut -- is "a chemical slurry," says Maddow.
So she invented a new and improved pina colada, with all natural ingredients. The key is orgeat (almond syrup), which replicates the unctuous mouthfeel so integral to the pina colada experience.
In short, this drink is delicious, and light enough that you could have a couple by the pool and feel no worse for the wear.
With Rachel's permission, I'm sharing the recipe here, along with the original pina colada recipe (for comparison purposes only):
Original Pina Colada
1.5 oz light rum
1 oz Meyers dark rum
2 oz Coco Lopez
1 oz cream
4 oz pineapple
blend with crushed ice
garnish: maraschino cherry and pineapple wedge
The Maddow Colada
1.5 oz light rum
1 oz 8 year old rum (something medium-bodied and amber)
1.5 oz unsweetened coconut milk
1.5 oz orgeat (almond syrup--Maddow recommends Teisseire. Torani is most common.)
4 oz pineapple juice
blend with ice
don't strain, serve in a short glass, garnish with pineapple wedge, tiny umbrella
serve with short, stubby (fat) straws
Enjoy, Eaters, and let us know how you like it!