Tis the season to be jolly and that includes attending or hosting holiday parties, and it doesn’t hurt when you’re hosting if you serve some great traditional and no-so-traditional Christmas drinks. Some people can’t imagine Christmas without a steaming hot glass of mulled wine or an ice cold glass of eggnog, while others love to get creative with a few iced glasses, some salt, and a few special liquors.
If you’re hosting a special holiday party or you’re wondering what to bring to a small get-together, I’ve got some great drink recipes for the holidays.
Yes, you could buy your eggnog from your local store, but if you don’t make it yourself, you’d be missing out on the freshest, creamiest eggnog you’ve ever tasted. Once it’s made you can decide whether or not to serve it on its own or with a splash of rum. Recipe and image from allrecipes.com.
4 cups milk
5 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 egg yolks
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups light rum
4 cups light cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Combine milk, cloves, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and cinnamon in a saucepan, and heat over lowest setting for 5 minutes. Slowly bring milk mixture to a boil.
In a large bowl, combine egg yolks and sugar. Whisk together until fluffy. Whisk hot milk mixture slowly into the eggs. Pour mixture into saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly for 3 minutes, or until thick. Do not allow mixture to boil. Strain to remove cloves, and let cool for about an hour.
Stir in rum, cream, 2 teaspoon vanilla, and nutmeg. Refrigerate overnight before serving.
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker that’s filled with ice.
Stir for 30 seconds, then strain into a cocktail glass.
Garnish with lemon and grated cinnamon.
Wondering what the perfect way to shake a cocktail is? Check out this mixology video on how to shake a drink.
Ina Garten’s Mulled Wine
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a hot glass of mulled wine. This is a drink with a long and varied history, remaining popular from medieval times all the way to present day. Try this recipe by Ina Garten from the Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network, and be sure to share with friends. Image from theguardian.com.
4 cups apple cider
1 (750-ml) bottle red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon
1/4 cup honey
2 cinnamon sticks
1 orange, zested and juiced
4 whole cloves
3 star anise
4 oranges, peeled, for garnish
Hot Buttered Rum
When it’s cold outside, nothing warms you like a Hot Buttered Rum. This delicious treat is a winter favourite and a must when you’re cozy inside and the snow is blowing against your windows. You might even want to leave one out as a treat for Santa. Recipe and image from allrecipes.com.
1 pound butter
1 pound brown sugar
1 pound confectioners’ sugar
1 quart vanilla ice cream, softened
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Blend in brown sugar and confectioners’ sugar. Remove from heat, and whisk in the ice cream, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Pour mixture into a plastic container, seal, and freeze.
In a coffee mug, measure 1 tablespoon Hot Buttered Rum Batter and 1 fluid ounce of rum, then fill cup with boiling water. Stir, and sprinkle top of drink with nutmeg.
These Christmas drinks are a great addition to any holiday party or festive get-together. If you need a few kitchen tools to create these drinks, take a look at barware and wine accessories. Here are a few of my favourites:
Serve your drinks in sparkling glasses
A Cocktail Shaker is a must-have for a party host, and a great host gift for a holiday party
Stainless steel ice cubes add a touch of flair to any drink