Thanksgiving Happy Hour: Hot Mulled Cider
- 1/2 gallon of fresh, unfiltered apple cider (no apple juice! I repeat, put down the apple juice!)
- 1 orange
- 15 cloves
- 4 3-inch sticks of cinnamon
- 15 allspice berries
- 1 teaspoon of nutmeg
- 7 pods of cardamon
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
Pour the apple cider into a large pot on the stove and turn the heat on to basically the lowest setting. Then, use a vegetable peeler to remove the zest from your orange, and toss the zest into the cider. I usually squeeze the fresh orange juice in as well (why let it go to waste?) Add the remaining ingredients. I like to put the small, loose spices into a T-Sac or bundled in cheesecloth to make it easier to remove later, but that’s optional.
Simmer for 20 minutes, then remove all the zest and spices. You can then add spiced rum, brandy, whiskey, bourbon, or apple jack….you get the idea…to your taste.
Serve in a mug with a cinnamon stick (if you’re feeling fancy).
This recipe has been my go-to jam for the past several fall/winters. It’s my favorite way to stay warm when it is cold as (snow)balls out there. It’s another recipe that’s easy to double or triple, and even if you don’t have some of the harder-to-get items like cardamom pods (what, you don’t have an awesomely cheap Indian market in your neighborhood?), it will still work.