"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Pajaretas (Goat Milk Cocktail)

Yesterday's goat slaughtering turned into quite a party. It was a gorgeous day but hot, and the men doing the butchering worked up a thirst early on. By the time the two goats were finished (we had originally thought we would process all four but that was just too much work) and one was tucked neatly into a giant kettle steaming away on top of a propane ring, the guys had worked their way through most of a case of Corona.

For myself, I made a pitcher of mojitos - I have a truly splendid patch of mint - and sipped on that while I made red salsa and green salsa, a pasta salad, and the various other accoutrements. My sister and her family showed up for the meal and she helped me out a little with the mojitos. Then our next door neighbors showed up and brought a bottle of whiskey with them.

It sounds like quite the bacchanal, but nobody got too lubricated. There was so much food. We decided to eat outside, and Homero dragged the milking stand over to the fire pit to serve as the sideboard. We simply laid out all the dishes, along with a tall stack of tortillas and some paper plates, lifted the lid off of the kettle, and let everyone make up their own tacos to their specifications. The meat was delicious and tender, falling off the bone. I think I ate six tacos.

Then we laid back in our canvas camping chairs and talked and laughed and drank while the children ran around playing. The hours drifted by. My sister and her family waved goodbye, and sometime later our neighbors walked across the field home. We picked at the food and told stories and threw bones to the dogs. The sun lowered in the west and the mosquitos came out, but nobody cared by that point.

Our friend C. suggested, after we ran out of beer, that rather than drink straight whiskey we try a rustic Mexican cocktail that a friend of his had introduced him to back home in Oaxaca. I have no idea who invented the "pajareta" nor where nor when, but that anonymous Mexican goatherd was a genius. Now I'm warning you, this is going to sound hideous. But trust me, it's actually delicious.

Well, you will just have to trust me, because unless you have an in-milk nanny-goat, you aren't going to be able to try it yourself anyway. C. told me to go get a jar and put a few spoonfuls of chocolate milk mix in it (in Mexico they use "chocomil" or Nestle's quick). I, of course, don't have any chocolate milk mix, but I did have some plain unsweetened powdered cocoa. I used a heaping teaspoon of cocoa and three heaping teaspoons of sugar and brought the jar back. C. added a healthy three shots of whiskey to the jar and swirled it around. Then we brought out the goat and - after clearing the milking stand of the detritus of the meal - milked her straight into the jar. I'd say we aded about a pint of fresh hot goat's milk to the chocolate and whiskey.

Then we divided it up and drank it. It was utterly fantastic ("udderly," ha ha), and no I'm not kidding. Sweet, creamy, frothy, chocolatey, and smooth, with a kick. I know this sounds bizarre, and maybe it is. But it was also the perfect capper for our goat party.

Trust me.


for three people:

1 heaping teaspoon hershey's unsweetened cocoa powder
3 heaping teaspoons sugar
3 healthy jiggers whiskey
mix in the bottom of a quart jar.
1 pint goat's milk straight from the teat.

pour into three cups and share, preferably around a fire outdoors.


AnyEdge said...

I quit drinking just about right on time I guess.

So Pajaretas? Is that related to birds, or haystacks?

Dea-chan said...

My friend still remembers with horror the first drink I ever made her which was chocolate milk and vodka. -I- thought it was tasty, so I bet that this'll be even better as spiked hot chocolate.

Milkweed said...

I am SO excited to try these. Dang. You really did it for me with this post even though the concept of goat slaughtering is still rough for me! Maybe after enough pajaretas it would be OK.

Laura said...

Awesome! Sometime, I'll have to come visit (I'll even help slaughter) - I miss *real* Mexican food. I grew up 3 miles from the border in San Diego County, and it's my comfort food.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a *great* night!