Homemade Apple Cider, great for fall

Nothing says fall like homemade Apple Cider. It is fun to make your own, tastes great and makes your home smell amazing.  Here is a great recipe to try and share.  Alter it to make it your own.  This is a great beverage to have on hand for cool fall and winter evenings, family gatherings, and of course holiday dinners!

Ingredients:

10 Gala Apples – Quartered

3/4 Cup White Sugar

1 Tablespoon Ground Cinnamon

1 Tablespoon Ground all spice

Note: you can float a few whole cinnamon sticks on top for extra flavor or add them at the end for garnish,  also adding extra spices like cloves or the zest of a lemon will spice up your cider depending on your preference.

Instructions:

Place apples in a large stockpot and add enough water cover by at least 2 inches. Stir in sugar, cinnamon, and allspice. Bring to a boil. Boil, uncovered, for 1 hour. Cover pot, reduce heat, and simmer for 2 hours.

Strain apple mixture though a fine mesh sieve. Discard solids. Drain cider again though a cheesecloth lined sieve. Refrigerate until cold.

Note: I prefer to serve my cider warm.  If you prefer the same you can always make this in advance and set it on warm in a crock pot.  Add some cinnamon sticks or Star of Anise to the once in the crock pot as a great garnish.

 

Fun fall drinks, get cozy

When it’s cold outside it’s always great to get cozy inside by a great fire with a warm drink so I wanted to share a few of my favorites with you to get everyone started off right this season.  These are all family friendly recipes (but each have a twist for adults if you prefer).  Stay warm this fall and winter season and as always, have a happy day!

Butterscotch Cocoa (My all-time favorite)

Ingredients: (makes 1 serving each)

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoons cocoa mix
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon butterscotch syrup
  • Whipped Cream

Mix the cocoa and sugar together in your mug.  Add the milk slowly to your cup and stir while adding to ensure your cocoa is smooth.  Microwave on high for 1 minute.  Remove (be careful in case your mug has become too hot).  Stir and check the temperature.  If you prefer it to be a bit warmer add another 30 second in the microwave.  Remove again, add the vanilla extract and butterscotch and stir carefully not to splash.  Top off with chilled whipped cream.  Enjoy!  (For the adults trying this… over 21… switch out the butterscotch syrup for butterscotch schnapps and make it one shot sized portion)

Warm Apple Cider

Ingredients: (Makes about 8 cups)

  • 1 gallon store bought apples cider
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 Orange
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar

In large saucepan, heat cider to a boil over medium heat.  While heating, add cloves, allspice, cinnamon sticks (broken into smaller pieces), orange (cut into quarters), and the brown sugar.  Once the mixture begins to boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.  Before serving, strain your cider and remove cloves, cinnamon and oranges.  IF you prefer, add new cinnamon sticks and orange slices as garnish.  (For the adults trying this recipe… over 21… add 1 cup of your choice of spiced rum or 1 cup of Brandy.  Add this after the boiling process once the heat is reduced to a simmer.)

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