Nothing beats a cup of *hot apple cider* on a cold, dreary and rainy Saturday morning in October (wait, is it October or January?). The smell of hot cider brewing on the stove top is absolutely divine. Here is my favorite recipe that I made up when I was craving massive amounts of apple cider last fall:
[hot apple cider alla Lauretta]
1 large gallon jug of Whole Foods’ 365 Brand Apple Juice (pasturized)
7-10 whole cinnamon sticks (remove before serving)
2 regular sized oranges, its juice squeezed into the cider while it’s brewing
a teaspoon of orange flower extract for taste
**optional: leave the orange peels in the cider for a subtle kick
a dash of ground cinnamon (if you are a big cinnamon fan such as myself)
Directions: add the apple juice, cinnamon sticks, juice from the orange (or orange flower extract and peels) in a large cooking pot. Add in the ground cinnamon in once everything has started brewing. Stove should be set on high to get things started, but turned down to medium high as needed. Stir for about 10-12 minutes, or until warm and boiled. Turn the stove off and cover the cider for another 5-7 minutes. Serve and enjoy immediately.
Happy Autumn… err should I say WINTER!?!