I have a warm and fuzzy childhood memory of drinking hot mulled cider at an old victorian manor house that my mom and nana took me to one Christmas. I don’t remember where the house was or the name, but I remember being as captivated by the sweet, rich taste of the drink as I was by the live performance of Peter Pan that we saw that day. These two special treats went together in my mind and cemented feelings of comfort, warmth, and togetherness at Christmas time.
Even still, on a cold winter’s day nothing says comfort to me like a steaming mug of cider. The addition of citrus, spices and perhaps a little brandy or whiskey give my recipe a decidedly adult twist.
Hot Mulled Cider
Warm, spiced cider is a great winter warmer!
- 1/2 gallon fresh apple cider
- 1/2 cup brandy optional
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- 4 whole cloves
- 1 cardamom pod lightly bruised
- zest of 1/2 orange
In a large saucepan, simmer the apple cider and spices for 1/2 hour.
Remove from heat and stir in the brandy. Pour through a sieve to remove the spices. (Do not leave the spices in too long, to avoid overly intense flavors which can overpower the cider.)
You can make the cider ahead of time, just be sure to store in a thermal carafe so it is served piping hot.
This is our last post for drinks week- up next, small bites! Great for holiday entertaining and snacking.
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Stay warm friends!