Browsing through Don the Beachcomber´s “Little Hawaiian Tropical Drink Book” it´s clear that Don used a lot of honey cream mix. Trader Vic also used it but it seems to me that Don used it more. I tried it the first time many years ago ( in 2007) when i tried to make Don`s Pearldiver´s Punch which i found on Rick`s blog the Kaiserpenguin.
I was new to tiki drinks at the time and found the honey cream mix quite a challenge. Not so much that it´s a bit time consuming to make but because the butter solids has a way of separating when getting cold and create an un-appetizing look for the drink.
Honey cream mix is a concoction of butter and honey which gives a mysteriously and wonderful velvety feel to the drink…you know there´s something there but cannot really put your finger on what it is…unless you know..
Honey cream mix was invented by Don the Beachcomber and there`s two recipes that i know of :
½ lb. Sweet cream butter
½ lb. Honey
½ lb. Light cream
Melt butter in a double boiler.
Heat mixture to 160° F.
At the same time, heat honey in a double boiler to 160° F.
Pre-warm the bowl of a blender by filling it with water to 120° F.
Empty and dry the bowl and immediately transfer to it the butter-cream mix and honey.
Blend at high speed for five (5) minutes.
Allow to stand for ten (10) minutes.
And we also have the Pearl Diver´s Punch mix which is a part of the Pearl Diver`s Punch recipe and involves clarified butter – in an attempt to bring the butter solids out – see recipe further down at the drink recipe.
And then this one from “Don the Bachcomber`s Little Hawaiian Tropical Drink Book”
One part sweet butter + One part honey
Heat the honey and butter separately, do not boil. When sufficiently heated pour honey over the sweet butter into one container.
Turn off the heat and commence whipping with a wire whip until both ingredients are well blended. Store in freezer until ready to use.
So they are lightly different with the first one containing cream and is blended. The one i mostly been using is the last one because it´s simpler and requires no blender.
This honey cream mix is around in slightly different versions, there´s one that contains equal parts honey, sugar and cream for example and then we have the “honey-mix” which is equal parts water and honey but no butter – the easiest to make of them all.
When i do honey (cream) mixes i always use liquid honey and i warm up just enough to let it all dissolve and mix nicely together. It shouldn`t be too warm – a bit above room temp is good. Once the honey is dissolved and mixed with the water it stays liquid and mixes easily in the drink.
It`s a bit different when you use butter…
You see, butter is a bit tricky because it contains butter solids that fatten up the glass and make it look – well..less appetizing and it happens when it cools. So to get around that problem – or at least make things better here´s a few steps to keep in mind:
Make the honey cream mix just a little before it´time to shake the drinks to avoid it cools to quick.
Always blend the drink at high speed when butter is involved and add the ice last, blend at high speed for 15 seconds and it should mix well.
To surely avoid the glass looking fat with butter solids, serve these drinks in a hollowed out pineapple or tiki mug – problem solved.
In any case – it might sound like too much work to do this butit´s actually not that bad and it´s well worth it every now and then to create these drinks the way they were intended because they really are a treat.
The Pearl Diver’s Punch is a classic old school tiki drink and Don invented in 1937. It`s the one i made my first attempts to make the honey cream mix with. It contains it`s own version called the Pearl Diver’s Punch Mix containing clarified butter and spices.
Pearl Diver’s Punch
0.75 oz Pearl Diver’s Mix
0.75 oz fresh lime juice
1 oz fresh orange juice
1 tsp Falernum
1.5 oz Gold Puerto Rican rum
0.75 oz Demerara rum
0.5 oz gold Jamaican rum
6 oz crushed ice
Pearl Diver’s Punch Mix:
1 oz unsalted butter (or ghee, clarified)
1 oz honey (use liquid)
1 tsp cinnamon syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla syrup
1/2 tsp pimento dram
Heat butter and honey in microwave for 10 seconds to melt. Add the spices and pimento dram and then add the juices and blend. Add rums.
This is quite a complete and well balanced drink, sweet and sour, spicy and strong, complex and velvety smooth…
The next drink is as exotic as the first one, it´s called Don`s Pearl and the original drink did actually contain a real south sea pearl with every 5th drink.
0.5 oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz fresh passionfruit juice
1 oz fresh guava juice
0.25 oz honey cream mix
0.25 oz club soda
2 oz Puerto Rican light rum
Pour ingredients in a blender and blend for 30 sec and then strain into a special glass.
For added excitement, add one real pearl into every fifth creation….
Paradise – Don the Beachcomber, host to 23 million dinner guests at his Don the Beachcomber restaurants often said – ” If you can`t get to paradise i`ll bring it to you”
Tahitian Rum Punch
0.75 oz fresh lime + 0.75 oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz passionfruit juice
0.5 oz falernum
0.5 oz honey cream mix
0.75 oz Jamaican white rum
0.75 oz Bacardi rum ( i`d use the 8 yo here)
Pour ingredients into a blender and add 6 oz cracked ice. Blend for 15 sec and strain into special frozen molds. Serve with straws.
Well, if you don`t wanna take the time and effort to create an ice mold – and who does that unless it´s for a special occasion? ( or a post on this blog:-) so just fill the glass with crushed ice, it works just fine.
Other Don Beach drinks that contains honey cream mix are the Mystery Gardenia, PiYi, Beachcomber`s Punch and the later made, streamlined version of the Pearl Diver´s Punch called just Pearl Diver.
0.5 oz lime juice
0.5 oz grapefruit juice
1 oz orange juice
0.5 oz Puerto Rican dark rum
0.5 oz Jamaican dark rum
1 oz Old St Croix rum (use Cruzan white)
Dash angostura bitters
Blend everything except the dark rum in blender with crushed ice and pour into a 12 oz glass and float the dark rum on top. Garnish with fresh mint and pineapple spear.
I also made a very tasty drink with honey cream mix a couple years ago that is so tasty that i still have it in my regular rotation and most likely always will have, it`s the Pineapple Delight and the recipe is here.
Enjoy your drinking and drink responsably!