Mulled Apple Cider
I took Tad for a walk around the neighborhood yesterday, and he had to wear his knit wool sweater over his long-sleeved shirt and a bonnet, so that means that the cool weather has officially arrived. We were warned by several people that it would be surprisingly chilly in Georgia while we were there this past weekend, but when we arrived we were all sweating. I was instantly brought back to our time living in Texas, though the heat in Atlanta is definitely much drier than Houston! Houston is like living in a sopping wet blanket. Blegh! I don't think I could ever live anywhere again where the autumn and winter aren't cold. You think you won't miss it, but it's such a disappointing feeling experiencing a Christmas without snow. Anyway, we got home, and I couldn't have been happier to feel that crisp breeze on my nose, cheeks, and ears, wishing I had brought a hat with me and gloves. We crunched through crispy brown leaves, smelling the faint hint of dried foliage and scents wafting in from the sale barn. I think it was last fall when Jill and I confessed to each other that we actually enjoy the pungent (yet subtle if you live in town) scent of cow and other livestock that live so near to us. I am not sure why, but I think the best way to justify this confession is that it is familiar.
While walking, watching Tad wheel his little tractor around and pick up as many small rocks and acorns that he could fit in his chubby hands, I suddenly had a serious craving for apple cider. The warm, rich, flavorful kind. I needed it!!! Good thing I had the perfect recipe for making some delicious mulled apple cider.
- 1 quart apple cider
- 1 short cinnamon stick, halved lengthwise
- 1 small piece of fresh ginger, thinly sliced
- fresh or dried strips of 1/2 orange peel
- 8 whole cloves
- 5 allspice berries
- 2-3 tbsp maple syrup or 1-2 tbsp vanilla (a little goes a long way!)
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary (optional)
- In a medium saucepan, combine the apple cider, cinnamon, ginger, orange peel, cloves, allspice berries, and rosemary. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook for 5 minutes. Strain the mixture and discard the spice pieces. Bring the cider back to a simmer and stir in the maple syrup or vanilla.
- Serve warm in your favorite mug.
It was the perfect remedy for my cravings. Nothing is better than feeling toasty with your apple cider, a warm blanket, cozy knit socks, and the perfect autumn movie. We're watching Hocus Pocus every single day until Halloween because we can. "Oh, look. Another glorious morning. Makes me SICK!" What's your favorite autumn movie to watch? My favorite grown up ones are Practical Magic, Dan in Real Life, and The Village!