Holiday SharpBar: Easy Holiday Drinks

Submitted by SharpMan Editorial Team on Wednesday 13th October 2010
In this article
  • 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:

  1. Heat a mug of apple cider (any prepared, bottled brand will do).
  2. Add a cinnamon stick.
  3. 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

  1. Pre-heat a mug with very warm water and shake it dry.
  2. Add one and 1/2 teaspoons of sugar, three ounces of rum and stir to dissolve the sugar.
  3. Pour in one cup of hot milk.
  4. 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
  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.

  1. Dip thick slices of bread into batter until evenly covered, front and back, and place on hot griddle.
  2. Grill each side to a golden brown. It only takes a few moments on each side.
  3. 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.

  1. 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).
  2. 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.)
  3. Place a large block of ice in the bowl (you can also use ice cubes, but they melt quicker and will dilute the punch).
  4. 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:

  1. Mix 2 bottles of dry, red wine with 5 cloves and 1/2 stick of cinnamon.
  2. Leave overnight.
  3. Add in 3/4 cup of sugar and heat until almost boiling. Remove from heat.
  4. 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
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