While it never gets chilled-to-the-bone cold here in Atlanta, we’re certainly feeling the weather. But what if you could have a little sunshine in a cup to warm you up from the inside out? Hot drinks, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, can give you the boost you need to ride out the rest of the season. Let’s take a closer look.
Adding spirits to a hot beverage can take any drink up a few notches, but there are a couple of tried-and-true recipes that are worth incorporating into your menus.
Start with ¾ cup of boiling water. To the mug of water, add 1 ½ ounce of whiskey, 2 to 3 teaspoons of honey to taste, 2 to 3 teaspoons of lemon juice to taste, a slice of lemon, and a cinnamon stick.
Start with 1 to 2 teaspoons of brown sugar in the bottom of a mug. Add 4 ounces of strong, hot coffee. Pour in 1 ¼ ounce of Irish whiskey. Lightly whip 1 ounce of heavy cream until it resembles a foam and add to the top of your cocktail.
If you don’t want the alcohol or you’re making the drinks for the whole family, here are a few ideas to get you started that go beyond basic cocoa, tea, or coffee.
Ditch the packs of Swiss Miss and try this French-style hot chocolate. If you have a chocolate shop nearby, they may sell sipping chocolate mixes, but it’s also something you can make on your own. You need 1 cup whole milk, ½ cup heavy cream, ½ vanilla extract, and 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate. Heat the milk, cream, and vanilla over medium heat, but don’t let it boil. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the chocolate until melted. Serve warm
Similarly, you can get chai tea bags, but if you want to do something fancier, you can make your own chai spiced tea at home. You need 8 ounces water, 4 ounces whole milk, sugar to taste, and 1 heaping tablespoon of black tea. For the spices, add smashed cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, a coin of fresh ginger, and a pinch of fennel seeds. Simmer the water and milk with the spices then add tea and let steep on the lowest heat for about 3 minutes while stirring occasionally. Strain the tea and enjoy.
What warm beverages are you enjoying this winter?