Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Hot Wassail

One of my favorite hot holiday drinks.  If you don't have any whole allspice berries or ginger root you can also sprinkle ground allspice and ginger to taste.  (FYI- fresh ginger root can be frozen.  Just in case you are wondering what the heck you are going to do with the leftovers you don't use.  Simply pull it out and grate it when a recipe calls for fresh ginger, as in asian dishes.)  I've done that before and it still seems to turn out fine.  Check your spices too before using them to make sure they are not old or expired.  (I usually smell my spices to see if they still smell fresh and strong).  This wassail recipe makes quite a bit, but can be halved.  Great for holiday parties!

Hot Wassail 
From Egg Free Bakery

1 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 cinnamon stick
4 whole allspice berries
5 whole cloves
½-inch piece ginger root
2 cups orange juice
1 cup lemon juice (fresh or bottled is fine)
1 quart apple cider or juice

Combine sugar and water; boil together for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Add spices, cover
and allow to stand in a warm place for 1 hour.  Remove whole spices.  Just before serving,
add juices and cider; bring quickly to boiling.  Remove from heat.  Test taste and adjust
according to taste.  Sometimes I've had to add just a little bit a sugar to it wasn't so tart. 
Serve hot or warm.  Yield 8-10 servings.

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