Cup of Christmas

Today it is cold, windy, and wet. We may have a fire in the fireplace for the first time this season tonight. Siting by the fire and the Christmas tree is a perfect time for a hot drink. Along with our collection of Christmas mugs,we have a number of hot drink recipes that have been favorites during the holidays through the years. Years ago, I always kept a spiced tea mix and hot chocolate mix that I made.  I don’t make those anymore because there are so many available on the shelves of the supermarket, but there are other recipes  I will share.

Hot Cranberry Punch 

This recipe is on a card in my mother’s handwriting. As usual when she passed on a recipe she liked, she noted “Good!” at the top of the card!

3/4 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

4 cups water, divided into 1 cup and 3 cups

2 cans jellied cranberry sauce

1 quart unsweetened pineapple juice

Butter to add before serving

 

1.Bring spices and 1 cup water to a boil and simmer just until well blended.

2.Combine (separate from above) 2 cans jellied cranberry sauce and 3 cups of water.  Add water a little at a time and beat to blend well.

3. Then combine spice mixture and cranberry mixture with 1 quart unsweetened pineapple juice. Heat to serving temperature.  Add 1 pat butter to each cup you are serving and ladle hot punch on top.

Mother added an asterisk, telling me “never serve without tasting”

This sounds crazy, but it is delicious!

 

Hot Buttered Pineapple Punch

1 46 ounce can unsweetened pineapple juice

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

3 1/4 cups dry white wine

Butter

In large saucepan, combine pineapple juice, sugar, lime juice, and nutmeg. Bring to boiling, stirring till sugar dissolves. Reduce heat,; stir in wine. Heat through but do not boil. Pour into heatproof glasses or mugs; float a pat of butter on each. Serve cinnamon stick with each serving if desired. Makes about 9 cups

 

Spiced Percolator Punch

We used to make this so often, we kept an extra large coffeemaker with spigot to make it.

2 32 ounce bottles cranberry juice cocktail

1 46 ounce can unsweetened pineapple juice

1 cup packed brown sugar

4 teaspoons whole cloves

12 inches of stick cinnamon, broken

peel of 1/4 orange, cut in strips

Optional – 1 fifth (3/14 cups) light rum

In 24 cup electric percolator, combine cranberry juice, pineapple juice, and brown sugar. Place cloves,cinnamon stick pieces, and orange peel in coffee maker basket. Assemble coffee maker; plug in and percolate. Just before serving, remove basket and stir in rum if you are using.. Keep hot. Float a quartered lemon slice in each mug if desired. Makes about 17 cups!

Of course we enjoy wassail, and everyone has their favorite recipe for that cup of holiday cheer, but I hope you enjoy trying one or all of the above as well.

Limeade

IMG_2827In our family, lemonade and limeade rank along with iced tea for cooling drinks.  When our boys were growing up, we lived in the Dallas, Texas area where there were Braum’s  restaurants noted for their great burgers and limeade.  This is one of those copycat recipes for Braum’s limeade. Now, my granddaughters enjoy making tall glasses of the tangy stuff.

1 cup water

1 cup sugar

1 lime

club soda

ice

cherry/cherry juice (optional)

Almost too easy to call a recipe – make a simple syrup by bringing 1 cup of water and a1 cup of sugar to a boil to dissolve sugar. Let cool.

Cut lime in half and press juice into glass. Add 1/4 cup simple syrup, club soda, and ice. Add cherries or cherry juice if you want a cherry limeade!  Put lime rinds back into glass along with ice.

Cranberry Orange Smoothie

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This is hands down my favorite smoothie of all the new ones we have tried!  I have never bought frozen cranberries before, but will keep them in the freezer now. I love adding fresh oranges. The combination of flavors is full of flavor and blends so well with Almond Coconut Milk and Greek yogurt.

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Cranberry Orange Smoothie

1 cup almond coconut milk
1/2 cup Greek yogurt (I used whole milk yogurt, not low-fat)
2/3 cup frozen cranberries
2 oranges, peeled, segmented, and seeded
2 tablespoons maple syrup, or to taste
Combine the almond milk, yogurt, cranberries, oranges and maple syrup in the blender.

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Meyer Lemon Smoothie

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A few days of much warmer weather had me looking at new smoothie recipes this week. My niece sent me a link to this one posted on realsimple.com.  Their version had the Meyer lemons peeled but then added lemon zest.  Meyer lemon skins are very thin (and difficult to peel without loosing alot of juice) and I have used the whole seeded lemon in other recipes, so I simply seeded the lemons and cut them in chunks, providing plenty of zest in the blending. I am not fond of drinking buttermilk but these breakfast treats were yummy, a definite keeper for refreshing summertime smoothies. I always love adding another Meyer lemon recipe to my files.  Our tree provides us with a bountiful supply of lemons every year.
Meyer Lemon Smoothie
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup Plain Greek yogurt
2 Meyer lemons seeded and cut in pieces
about 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
2  tablespoons agave syrup or honey to taste
1 cup crushed ice
Place all ingredients except ice in blender beginning with buttermilk. When lemon chunks have been pureed, add crushed ice and blend a few seconds longer. Pour in 2 glasses and garnish with lemon slice or mint.