Saturday, December 17, 2011

Beverages - The DD will thank you.

We hosted our annual Christmas party last night. For me, once that party happens - it really feels like Christmas. This was our 9th party. 9 years - that's a lot of parties. We were surrounded by family and great friends. I was in my element - cooking up a storm. Our wee house was packed to the max, the kitchen was hopping, it was a great night.

On the menu:
Mrs. Sherstan's Clam Chowder
Chili (I used ground beef this time)
Meats, cheeses and olives
Baked brie
Chocolate mousse tarts
Veggies and dip (thanks to my bestie - Tracy)
Mulled cider
Cranberry citrus punch

And thanks to my mom!!! She brought her famous spicy meatballs, homemade butter tarts, cherry pound cake and shortbreads.

I haven't done a punch or mulled cider before at our party - this was a first. I usually just offer wine, pop, beer... but we have quite a few friends that come and are the designated drivers - so I wanted to be able to offer them something different than just pop or water. I love that we have such smart friends and family - and they always make plans to arrive home safely.

I got this mulled cider recipe from a cooking demonstration that I went to last month. It is the easiest recipe in the world. Seriously. I would not kid about this. You could probably do this recipe with your eyes closed - but I wouldn't recommend it because I don't want you to burn yourself on the oven.


Mulled Cider

Equal parts of apple juice and cranberry juice - depending on how much you want to make - maybe 3 cups each
2-3 cinnamon sticks (if you don't have cinnamon sticks you can always use just regular cinnamon - 1/2 tsp)
1/2 cup Fresh cranberries

Put all of the ingredients into a pot, or kettle, anything that you can let simmer on the stove, and simmer on low to medium heat. Once it heats up, you can serve it, and you can keep it on low on the stove and serve when desired.


See? I told you! So easy.

For the punch - my mom used to make this all the time, for any shower, or party that we had. It too is super easy. I doctored it up a bit - but it was very similar to what my mom used to make.


Citrus Cranberry Punch

1 can of frozen orange juice (thawed) - with 3 cans of water - or 1 litre of fresh orange juice
1 litre of cranberry juice
1/2 litre of pineapple, or mango juice
1 large orange - cut into thin slices with the peel still on
2 lemons - cut into thin slices
1/2 cup of fresh cranberries
Ginger Ale, Club Soda or Champagne

In a large punch bowl add in the oranges, lemons and cranberries. Pour in the juices and stir. Add in the ice to keep it cool.

When serving = fill the glass 2/3 with the punch and 1/3 of either ginger ale, club soda or champagne.

This is a great punch because you can really change it up with different fruits and juices.

Alright - I need to curl up on the couch with a bowl of leftover chili, a blanket, and a good Christmas movie.



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