Making Mulled Spiced & Spiked Cider

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Spiced Cider

Today was firewood day. Long overdue due to the hollowing winds and searing temps we’ve had lately. Definitely, NOT in keeping with the Christmas season.

This weekend came just in time, as we had used the last remaining logs from last year’s firewood stack last night.

We are fortunately enough to have a local rancher who allows us to pick up firewood for free, as long as we load and haul it ourselves. Not a bad deal in my book (and the exercise ain’t bad either). Our truck will hold about 2 cords of wood, and hold us until we can get another 2 cords the beginning of January.

The weather was chilly, about 48-degrees. Not frigid by any stretch. Cool enough to work up a sweat filling the truck bed with seasoned, split eucalyptus and not feel overheated.

Before we left, though, I had a feeling that we’d be wanting a nice warm drink when we returned. Something soothing to take the chill off with just a slight kick to warm us down to our toes. So, I readied the crock pot!

My “go-to” recipe on these cold days is a crock pot version of a mulled spiced cider, with a bit of a kick. How hard you want that kick to be is entirely up to you!

Here ya go.

Pour 1 gallon of apple cider into a crock pot;

Add 3 small apples, cut in half and, 2 oranges, cut into quarters;

Now, toss in 1/2 cup fresh whole cranberries, 3 whole star anise, and 2 small cinnamon sticks, about 2-inches long;

Add to that a teaspoon of ground ginger and ground cloves.

Here comes the kick…pour in 1/2 to 1-1/2 cups of bourbon.

Set the crock pot on high and GO STACK FIREWOOD!

When you return, not only will you house smell amazing, but you have a piping hot seasonal drink that will warm you down to your toes.

I like to serve mine in clear glass coffee mugs or pint sized canning jars. To be extra festive, float a thin slice of apple or orange on top, or use a cinnamon stick as a stir if you like an extra cinnamony flavor.


To learn more about stacking firewood or making a more efficient fire check out these two articles.

The Science of Stacking Firewood

Building a Fire to Improve Heat Efficiency

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