Rompope, a Mexican holiday cocktail similar to eggnog, borrowed its basic recipe from Spanish egg punch, called ponche de huevo. First concocted by nuns in the 17th century in a Puebla convent, a taste for rompope spread throughout Mexico after the nuns perfected the recipe and began selling the sweet and fragrant drink. As the story goes, one of the sisters took the original recipe, which had a secret ingredient, to the grave with her. But if there's something missing today, the Mexicans don't seem to notice. Consumption of the creamy drink spikes around Christmas and New Year's, but it's also a fitting drink for a birthday toast or along with dessert. Rompope can be served chilled, over ice or warm, depending on the season and your taste preference. You can increase or decrease the amount of rum too.
- Process the almonds into a paste in a food processor.
- Simmer the milk, sugar and cinnamon stick in a heavy-bottom saucepan until the sugar dissolves and the milk heats through but does not boil. Remove it from the stove and let it stand for 30 minutes.
- Whisk the almond paste into the milk mixture.
- Beat the egg yolks until creamy, then slowly add the milk mixture, stirring continuously until you incorporate it all.
- Return the pan to the stove and cook the mixture over low heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Allow the rompope to cool completely.
- Add the rum and stir before serving.