WassailI had this for the first time at a New Year’s Eve party I attended recently, and I was completely blown away by the amazing flavor of this traditional English hot beverage. Wassail is a hot mulled apple cider that originated as part of a tradition in southern England known as ‘wassailing’, in which participants visit orchard after orchard and sing to the trees while drinking wassail in order to ensure a good harvest for the next year. I’ve seen more than a few great recipes, but because in Alton Brown I trust, here’s his recipe (although I would highly recommend adding a shot or two of Fireball whiskey to your mugs as well).
Peppermint Hot ChocolateHot chocolate is awesome. Peppermint is awesome. Together, they are pretty much my favorite winter beverage of all time, and this recipe from Jackie Riley on foodnetwork.com sounds positively decadent. Heavy cream? Chopped bittersweet chocolate? Sweetened whipped cream on top? *drools*
Hot Buttered RumMartha Stewart can do no wrong, in my opinion, when it comes to tasty hot drinks for cold winter nights, and her hot buttered rum recipe incorporates dark rum and homemade spiced butter into a luscious hot toddy. Come to think of it, that spiced butter would probably be super tasty on some fresh scones with a mug of the buttered rum to wash it all down…now I’m just making myself hungry.
Caramel Apple CiderEverybody knows one of the best parts about fall/winter is when Starbucks starts serving their caramel apple cider again, but with this recipe from guest author Melissa on tatertotsandjello.com, you won’t have to wait any longer – you’ll be able to make your own at home! My house smelled amazing while I was slow cooking this cider, and I made sure to use glass mugs to show off the silky caramel color and texture of the cider when I served it up.
Spiced Hot Dark ChocolateAs a life-long fan of both spicy foods and dark chocolate, this delicious recipe completely sold me at 6 ounces of dark chocolate and 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper. I love that it’s made with soy milk as well, which has a natural sweetness to it that helps balance the bitterness of the dark chocolate and the spiciness of the cayenne pepper.
Mulled wine is good stuff, and it’s been part of family holiday tradition for many people I know for years! Blending a dusky red with orange juice, cinnamon, port, cloves, brown sugar, and Cointreau is certainly a recipe for holiday cheer, but I don’t think indulging in this tasty beverage should be limited to the holiday season only, do you?
Hope these recipes have you as eager to head home and whip up a hot beverage or two as I am!