Spiced apple cider is one of those really fall-y fall things. It makes you want to curl up with a soft blanket, a good book (or your newest Netflix addiction…ahem…Gilmore Girls – the original series) and a mug of this hot, aromatic deliciousness.
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I have been craving light-heartedness and comfort lately. One can only take so much news about the recent devastation in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas and now here in California. I have family members who these fires have wreaked havoc on. It’s too much. So, I’ve been bing watching Gilmore Girls and thinking about the good ‘ol 90’s.
Have you guys seen the show recently?! The videography was really bad…I am pretty sure I saw the boom mic in at least one shot, and the camera guy in the store reflection in another shot. But y’all, they have that 90’s style down pat — from the butterfly clips to the super trendy chokers! It’s all there.
Do you remember the floppy 90’s hair style on all the guys, too?! The one that was parted down the middle…
Mike was trying to explain his HOT nineties style to our 14-year-old son, but he couldn’t do it justice until we saw Dean.
Yes, y’all, Mike was a blonde Dean…his hair was just like that, plus he wore a puka shell choker, and he even rolled his sleeves up on his button down shirt when he was trying to look semi-casual. Totally 90’s!
Anyway, I was watching a fall episode, and all of a sudden, I had a craving for all things fall. Pretty leaves, comfy sweaters, boots, and a hot cup of spiced apple cider!
The cider is so simple to make!
Pour a gallon of apple cider into a stock pot, and add in 1 cup of orange juice (I like the pulp free kind), two cinnamon sticks, a few all spice berries, some cloves, a slice of orange peel (sans pith – the white stuff that makes it bitter), and a sprinkle of nutmeg. Let all of that simmer together for a little bit, and breathe in the amazing aroma! Once the flavors have melded, go ahead and ladle some into a mug and enjoy!
Here are the tools I used to make the spiced cider:
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- Clear Mug: Aren’t these adorable?! I love them!
- Ladle: I’ve had mine since I got married 13-years ago.
- 100% Cotton Cheesecloth : Because it’s easier to wrap all of the spices in this stuff, rather than have to fish them out later. Learn from me, haha.
- Cast Iron Dutch Oven: I’ve had this thing for years!! It’s moved all around the country with me, and despite it being beaten up in various cupboards and by three boys learning how to do the dishes, it’s as amazing as ever!
Now, onto the recipe!!
- 1 gallon of apple juice
- 1 cup of orange juice
- 1 orange -- zested (in large chunks), peeled and quartered. The zest will be added along with the segments.
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 teaspoon of whole cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon of whole allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt
- (optional 1/4 cup of brown sugar depending on the sweetness of your apple juice)
- Wrap the spices, orange zest and orange segments in a square of the cheesecloth and tie it with a piece of kitchen string.
- Add all of the ingredients, including the satchel of spices, into your favorite pot. I use my cast iron dutch oven, because it keeps the cider hot long after I have turned the burner off.
- Allow the cider to simmer on low heat for about an hour. The cider will meld with the spices and it will become slightly concentrated, which produces a stronger, sweeter flavor.
- Serve hot and enjoy!
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