"P" is for Punches

May 23, 2019

Credit SC Public Radio

"P" is for punches. Punches have been prominent at South Carolina social gatherings from the state’s beginnings. When Eliza Lucas Pinckney recorded her favorite receipts in 1756, she included one for the Duke of Norfolk Punch, made with twelve pounds of sugar, thirty oranges plus five and one-half quarts juice, thirty lemons pus three and one-half quarts of juice, and a gallon of rum. Punches were made to serve a crowd, and individual recipes were named for particular social clubs. There are recipes for punches designed to serve literally hundreds. Some of the recipes begin with a base of tea, long a favorite in the lowcountry, and most include tropical fruit such as citrus or pineapple. With changes in both social structure and liquor law in South Carolina, punches have fallen out of favor.