When it’s so cold that you can chill your cocktails by placing them outside for a split second, but you’re reluctant to make mulled wine because it seems like such a tired cliche, either get the hell over yourself or make mulled cider instead. This recipe makes enough to serve two cold, thirsty humans.
1 can cider (we used Monteith’s)
1/2 can ginger ale
1/2 orange (prick the peel with a fork or the tip of a sharp knife to help release its flavour)
1 lemon wedge (likewise)
1 cardamom pod, crushed
1 teaspoon good-quality ground cinnamon (we used one from Gewurzhaus)
Dark rum (we used Sailor Jerry’s spiced rum)
Insulated glass (eg a double-walled glass) or regular glass tea cup
Add everything except the rum to a saucepan and bring to the boil. Turn off the heat. Slosh some rum into the glass (15-30ml, depending on your taste), then strain some cider over the top. Garnish with an orange slice.
Autumn in a glass – the aroma of baking spices and apple strudel hits you as the steam rises towards your face, and then you’re a kid in grandma’s kitchen all over again as you take that first sip (although if grandma was serving you alcoholic mulled cider when you were still in nappies, she should possibly be in jail).
This one’s adapted from The Londoner – the original recipe is here.
Mulled cider is great for a winter party, as it means you don’t get stuck making individual cocktails all night. As per The Londoner’s suggestion, we made a big batch using Old Rosie cider, and found that it required quite a lot of honey or brown sugar (or both, we’re not fussy) to sweeten it up. This is because Old Rosie is more like a sour-ish, flat scrumpy than a sweet, bubbly cider. Cider purists will hate us for this but we preferred the recipe we made with Monteith’s. If you have a sweet tooth, you probably will, too. Oh, and yes, we know this is not actually a cocktail recipe, and frankly, we don’t care.