Tag Archives: cocktails

What To Do with the Leftover Raw Egg Yolks after You’ve Made a Pisco Sour: The Vaina

A letter from Apoteoso: You remember Apoteoso, the kid from Whitefish Bay who got jailed in the Andes sometime in the past? Apparently, he got wind of us using his story here at the Assassin Bug, and was none too happy about it. His parents threatened to have us sued in Milwaukee District Court. (I can tell you we were quaking in our mukluks, notwithstanding their superior insulating qualities.) One of our editors had the brilliant idea of letting Apoteoso write a post or two for us. It seems that being in the spotlight has soothed whatever anger the Arco-Balena family may have had (not that we would ever call writing for the Assassin Bug being in the spotlight).

And what better subject for Apoteoso than mind-altering substances? In deference to alcohol being the drug of choice world-wide, and in trying to keep with the blog’s theme of pairing  South American Cocktail recipes with public health writing, we present you with following recipe. Note also that Apoteoso truly entered the spirit of the blog, finding a way to use public health in his post. He thought he would catch us being hypocritical. We do promise to follow up (yeah, right, just like you promised to follow up on the Zappa post) with a report on egg safety.

Hard time looking tough drinking this one.


Back when you plagiarizing sods gave a recipe for the classic Peruvian cocktail, the Pisco Sour, right?  You oh so cavalierly gave the formula, knowing that your readers would probably rush right out and make their libations from raw egg whites, pasteurized egg whites not being something what readers got on they’re shelves. (They do carry them at the Prospect Avenue Whole Foods in Milwaukee, so I bet they have them elsewhere.) And then as divine karmic comeuppance, the Wright County Egg Salmonella outbreak occurred last summers, and half a billion eggs we’re recalled. Really. I know that I am given to hyperbolly, but this was realllly a half a billion eggs. I don’t know if you guys got sick, but you really should feel responsible if anyone got sick drinking Pisco Sours. anyways, there is always the problem of what to do with the yolks if youve been making stuff with the whites, so here you go (from Andrea’s Recipes):


1-1/2 ounces (45 ml) ruby red port
1 ounce (30 ml) cognac or brandy
1 ounce (30 ml) crème de cacao
3 teaspoons confectioner’s sugar
1 raw egg yolk, very fresh
1/3 cup crushed ice
pinch of cinnamon


In the blender, mix the port, cognac, crème de cacao, confectioner’s sugar, and egg yolk with the ice until foamy. Pour into the flute or mini cocktail glasses and garnish with a pinch of cinnamon.

Note from the editors: Of course, use only pasteurized egg yolks.

Found this one in españolo:

No debes usar vino tinto normal, sino vino añejo. No es lo mismo. Con vino tinto corriente debe quedar horrible.
El vermuth no corresponde. Falta la canela molida
Está mal tu receta. No sé qué hiciste, pero no es vaina.

Trata con la siguiente:
50 cc Vino Añejo
30 cc Cognac
30 cc Licor de Cacao
2-3 Cucharaditas de Azúcar Flor
1 Yema de Huevo
Canela en polvo

Mezclar todos los ingredientes (excepto la canela) en una coctelera con hielo. Batir y servir en una copa de sour. Espolvorear canela sobre el trago

Back in the Saddle Again, Curative Cocktail in Hand

¡Hola Argentina!


A fisherman in the Plata Basin-Gran Chaco region


When speaking of South America, I have so far only written about Peru. They are, obviously, very different countries. From the point of view of this blog, the biggest differences are in the poverty levels and in their favorite cocktails (No, I don’t equate them in importance). Argentina had a poverty level of 13.9% in 2009, compared with nearly triple that rate in Peru–36.8%. Argentina has had remarkable success in reducing the rate of Chagas’ Disease to background levels (there are notable exceptions in certain regions of the country, most importantly the Gran Chaco), whereas in Peru there seems to be roadblocks, like less money and lack of political will.

As for cocktails, we’ve already mentioned the Pisco Sour, the national cocktail of Peru. It’s an easy drink to like, and the pisco kind of creeps up on the drinker in gentle way.  Searching for the national cocktail of Argentina, the consensus seems to be that anything mixed with Fernet-Branca, especially Coca-Cola, is considered characteristically Argentine. Fernet-Branca, however, does not come from Argentina. Fernet originated in Milan, from a formula crafted in 1845 by Bernardino Branca. It  uses around 40 different herbs and spices, including myrrh (follow this link for Monty Python’s info on this), chamomile, gentian root and saffron. Italians call it an amaro, meaning bitter, and it was purported to have medicinal qualities, being good for gastrointestinal upset, menstrual problems, hangovers, and cholera, thus allowing me to make this post in good faith on a public health blog. As for these claims being true, you are on your own.


This stuff is horrible. “Acquired taste”  is only true if by acquiring you mean having your taste buds removed. Here are some quotes gleaned from the Internets:

From Salon.com:

Fernet Branca: the trendy drink that makes you gag. Fernet Branca is an Italian liqueur with a taste so pungent that your first sip has a good chance of making you either want to throw up or wash your mouth out with Pepto Bismol.

From the Atlantic.com

Your first sip of Fernet Branca, an Italian liqueur, will be akin to waking up in a foreign country and finding a crowd of people arguing in agitated, thorny voices outside your hotel window.

From Straight.com

It is the colour of road tar, smells like hell, tastes worse, and has to be shot straight back, with no hesitation.

I wrote this post after trying to find something out about myrrh, but it led to this. Never having been to the country, Argentines are free to refute my claim that Fernet and Coke is the national drink.