I will be up front. I hate being cold. I loathe winter. But I do love being inside, listening to Christmas carols, and drinking apple cider. I’m totally fine with snow as long as I’m inside and it remains outside. The second I have to don the GoreTex coat I got one year in college for Christmas (not the pea coat I asked for), I get cranky and upset. So when our local farmer’s market started selling apple cider, I started feeling happier, despite the rapidly decreasing temperature.
Now I’ve watched enough Food Network and read enough food blogs to know that you can’t serve something straight, you need to tweak it to make it unique. Except a Bojangles chicken biscuit. You eat that bad boy just as it is, don’t bother with it. Anyway, with apple cider you are taking a delicious base (the cider) and adding spices and just a little fruit to make it the embodiment of liquid holiday. I suggest adding allspice berries, cinnamon sticks, sliced oranges, and whole cranberries. Mmmmm mmmm, yummy. It almost outweighs the cold. Almost.
Mulled Apple Cider
1/2 gallon apple cider
1 orange, sliced
1/2 cup whole cranberries
2 tbsp allspice berries
5 cinnamon sticks
Put a large pot over heat. Pour in cider. Add fruit and spices. In order to fully incorporate the flavors, you want to scald the cider, bring it to almost a boil. Lower the temperature and simmer until you’re ready to serve.