Gone are the long summer nights, the beach days, the short sleeves. The approaching holiday season means a lot of different things to everyone. Some are planning trips to see family, some are stressing about said trips (or arrivals) of family, some are ecstatic about the early onslaught of bargain Christmas shopping, some are scrooges and hibernate all winter. Then there are those that just drink. I say bring on the beverages! In all honesty though, the holiday season does usher in the feeling of warmth (even though I hate the fact that I have to cover myself to be warm), joy, and being with family. Cherish those that you have huddled around you this season and be thankful that you’re in a huddle, because it’s ridiculously cold. But above all else, drink and be merry! Here’s a recipe to get you started!
8 cups apple cider
1 750 ml. bottle of dry hard cider
3 12 oz. bottles of ginger beer
1 1/2 cups whiskey
Juice of one lemon
Several dashes orange bitters
3-4 star anise, for garnish (and flavor!)
1 orange, sliced into rounds, for garnish (and flavor!)
cinnamon sticks, for garnish (and…you get the picture)
Combine the ciders, ginger beer, whiskey, lemon juice, and bitters in a large punch bowl or pitcher. Stir to combine. Top with orange slices and cinnamon sticks. Yes, it’s that easy. And it makes 15-20 servings so that’s a happy day for one person or a good day for a party!
What’s the best thing about this concoction?
Warm the apple cider, orange slices, cinnamon sticks, star anise and add 1/2 cup brown sugar and several whole cloves in a large pot and mull for 30 minutes. Pour into glass and add as much whiskey as your heart desires. You’re welcome.