Holiday SharpBar: Easy Holiday DrinksSubmitted by SharpMan Editorial Team on Wednesday 13th October 2010
- Hot, buttered rum.
- A new twist on traditional Eggnog.
- Sparkling holiday punch.
- Swedish Glögg: hot-spiced, red wine.
You are correct, SharpMan: the holiday season is upon us. From trick-or-treat to the traditions of Thanksgiving and other year-end celebrations, this will be the first holiday season of the new millennium. With Y2K worries far behind, get ready to entertain and enjoy:
A Warm, Soothing Beverage by the Fire
Whether you’re entertaining the office staff or a special SharpWoman this holiday season, you’ll be right on target with this fireside favorite. Hot-buttered cinnamon cider can be enjoyed without alcohol for those who need to abstain, or you can easily add a spike to the spice for those who want an extra shot of warmth this holiday.
Hot-Buttered, Cinnamon Cider:
- Heat a mug of apple cider (any prepared, bottled brand will do).
- Add a cinnamon stick.
- Stir and serve with the cinnamon stick as the garnish.
(Yes, it is that easy.)
Want to get fancy?
Heat the cider, add cinnamon stick as directed above, then add a thin pat of unsalted butter and let the warm cider melt it on top. Be sure to add a log to the fire for the full effect. Because all ingredients are non-perishable, keep them on hand for unexpected guests — you’ll be sure to impress.
Or, add a little spike to the spice - Hot-Buttered Rum
- Pre-heat a mug with very warm water and shake it dry.
- Add one and 1/2 teaspoons of sugar, three ounces of rum and stir to dissolve the sugar.
- Pour in one cup of hot milk.
- Top with a pat of unsalted butter and garnish with ground nutmeg and cinnamon stick. Cheers.
Traditional Favorite - an Adventure in Eggnog
Here’s a recipe - from scratch - to treat 12 of your guests to a traditional favorite — eggnog:
12 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
26 ounces (or a one-fifth bottle) blended whiskey or bourbon
1 and 1/2 cups dark rum
2 cups milk
1 quart heavy cream, chilled
12 egg whites
ground nutmeg for garnish
- Beat egg yolks and sugar in deep bowl using a wire whisk or electric beater. Mix to a thick consistency. Then, using a wooden spoon or spatula, beat in the whiskey, rum and milk. Cover bowl with plastic or foil and refrigerate overnight.
- Just before serving, whip the cream in a large, chilled bowl until stiff. Then beat egg whites in a separate large bowl (with a clean beater). Beat egg whites until stiff and then fold in whipped cream — gently, but thoroughly — using a rubber spatula.
- Pour the egg-yolk mixture into a large, chilled serving bowl, add the egg-white mixture and fold together with the spatula until no trace of white remains.
- Sprinkle with nutmeg and serve at once from chilled cups.
To busy for eggnog from scratch? Grocery stores carry pre-made eggnog during the holiday season; check the dairy department. Follow the directions as noted, and then improvise with garnish to make your store-bought eggnog look homemade.
If you are entertaining a SharpWoman for Breakfast in Bed, use any "leftover" eggnog as the dipping batter for a one-of-a-kind holiday French Toast.
French Toast not a part of your repertoire? It is now.
- Dip thick slices of bread into batter until evenly covered, front and back, and place on hot griddle.
- Grill each side to a golden brown. It only takes a few moments on each side.
- Top with your choice of butter, powered sugar, jam, syrup or fruit.
Sparkling Punch - Cool and Refreshing
When warmer holiday climates call for a cool treat, nothing says "holiday" like champagne.
- Place slices from 1 lemon, 1 lime and 1 orange in a large punch bowl (additional fruit or fruit juices may be added, to taste).
- Add a dozen maraschino cherries and 1 cup of brandy (optional) and 1/2 cup curaçao (optional). (Curaçao is a liqueur flavored with sour orange peel.)
- Place a large block of ice in the bowl (you can also use ice cubes, but they melt quicker and will dilute the punch).
- Just before serving, add champagne (or sparking cider for a non-alcoholic punch). For each 750 ml bottle of champagne or cider, also add a litter of club soda.
Swedish Glögg, A Holiday Favorite
And saving the best for last . . . if this European favorite is not a part of your holiday tradition, it will be soon. For a simple Glögg serving 10-12 people:
- Mix 2 bottles of dry, red wine with 5 cloves and 1/2 stick of cinnamon.
- Leave overnight.
- Add in 3/4 cup of sugar and heat until almost boiling. Remove from heat.
- Improvise by adding 1 cup raisins, the peel from 1 orange or 1 cup whole, peeled almonds for a more traditional Glögg
Serve hot in a mug and get ready for rave reviews.This article last updated on Wednesday 13th October 2010