And happy Winter Solstice to those of us in the Southern Hemisphere. It's a day for wrapping up warm in your winter jacket, hat, gloves,and scarf, and going for a walk in the chilly air, followed by coming home and cuddling up in front of a cozy warm fire (or putting one up on your TV if you don't have a fireplace).
And what better way to defrost from the cold than to make a pot of my favorite Hot Spiced Apple Juice, and then toasting with your loved ones to the coming of light. From this point on the days will slowly get longer, and eventually spring and summer will be on their way. I love the idea of the wheel of the year, and the perpetual cycle of winter followed, by spring, summer, and eventually autumn.
My spiced apple juice recipe is very easy to make, and because of the citrus and spices, your home will smell wonderful afterward, let alone the lovely taste of the spiced apple juice. Another wonderful thing about this recipe is that the slices of orange and lemons in the pot while cooking remind me of all the sunny days to come.
Spiced Apple Juice Ingredients (makes 3 liters, but I usually only make up 1L and cut back on the spices)
1 x 3L container of Apple juice
1/2 Cup of Sugar
1/2 a Cinnamon Quill
8 Allspice Berries
Spiced Apple Juice Recipe
1. Wash and then cut the whole lemon and orange into 1/2 cm slices. Remove all seeds before adding to the pot.
2. To a medium sized pot add all the ingredients.
3. Heat the ingredients until simmering. Let the spiced apple juice continue simmering and taste test until it reaches your preferred taste. If you leave it too long the cinnamon, cloves, and allspice berries may get quite strong. I usually find 5 minutes simmering is enough.
4. Take the pot off the stove and sieve all the ingredients from the hot spiced apple juice.
5. Serve in cute mugs, sip, and enjoy.
6. If you have any left over spiced apple juice, let it cool and store it in the fridge. It doesn't take long to heat back in up in the microwave for enjoying later.
I hope you love my recipe as much as I do, it's become a winter solstice favorite over the last couple of years. This recipe would also work wonderfully while celebrating Matariki, after waking up early to try and spot Matariki before dawn.
I find it hard to celebrate winter-themed Christmassy things in summer—when hearty food and drink are much more appreciated when the weather is colder. In our household we celebrate the winter solstice with hot spiced apple juice, a roast dinner, followed Christmas pudding with custard and ice cream.
Have a wonderful day,