Saturday, December 24, 2011

Spiced Apple Cider

hot spiced cider

This Christmas Eve, let's gather 'round the tree and sing carols with family and friends.  Let's pass a plate of cookies and exchange a gift or two.  Let's listen for the sound of reindeer hooves on the roof, and watch the snow fall quietly outside.  Let's sit in front of the fire together, hands wrapped around steaming mugs of hot and cheery cider.

spiced cider ingredients

I hope this Christmas brings comfort and joy to your home, and a renewed sense of the presence of God and light in your life.  Merry Christmas!

Hot Spiced Cider

2 quarts apple cider
2 oranges
2 cinnamon sticks
2 whole star anise
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest from the oranges in long strips.  Place orange peels and whole spices in a heavy pot on the stove.  Slice oranges in half and squeeze the juice into the pot.  Pour apple cider over, cover, and place over a medium flame until cider just begins to bubble.  Remove from heat and allow to steep.  Strain and discard solids, and return to the pot over a low flame, or to a slow cooker on low.  Add a bit of bourbon or dark rum to each mug as you serve - you wouldn't want that extra kick of holiday cheer to cook off!

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