Spiced Cranberry Hot Toddy Recipe
Each year we head out as a family to hunt down the perfect Christmas tree. We’re lucky to live close to several Frasier Fir farms where you can go and cut-your-own, so we make a day of it. My husband, Randy, shares about our Christmas tree hunt from a few years back. Plus, there’s a recipe to follow for a hot toddy, a Spiced Cranberry Hot Toddy to be exact, that will make the end of any day out and about whether shopping for socks, or a tree most wonderful.
The air was brisk and the sun was out. We all piled in the truck on a mission to find the perfect Christmas tree. Our smartphones guided us to a beautiful small family farm with smart rows of Frasier Firs planted on gently rolling hills. Unfortunately, we soon learned that this lovely farm was sold out of all but the short ones. The nice folks there gave us directions to another local farm with taller trees about a mile away. We made our way back to the truck and headed up the windy, hilly, one-lane dirt road to a new destination.
This place was pretty too, but wow the farm was steep, like mountain goat steep. So we got out and went-a’ Christmas tree hunting. It was perfect weather for it, cold, and slightly damp. Experience tells us that the best ones will be the hardest to get to, so with that in mind, a handy long pole for measuring, we set off climbing. And I mean climbing. We were not disappointed. What a view!
We meandered through the trees and goofed off a bit. I even took a moment to practice my gift with the very long measuring pole: balancing things on my nose. There’s never a dull moment as long as there is something to balance on my nose.
After about thirty minutes of trekking, comparing and measuring we found the one. Record time for The Johnson Family. The owner’s grandson cut it for us then we lugged it down the hill (that part was real easy).
I offered to entertain the owners of the farm in exchange for a small discount on our tree, but they politely declined. Even so I gave them a freebie by repeating my balancing act with the measuring pole to a smattering of applause. I thought the 18 seconds was a respectable effort considering the hike we just finished. Plus, there was a slight breeze.
We left with a great tree and better memories. It was a fun day for sure.
Thanks Randy! Y’all, we are never short on excitement in our home. Never. Randy has been known to balance brooms, golf clubs, and rakes at whim. I’m not complaining. Laughter is essential in life, don’t you think?
After a day of fun and balancing things on noses or whatever you do when you’re running around with family or friends on a chilly day, it’s always nice to come home to a warm cozy drink like this Spiced Cranberry Hot Toddy. Just like most of the recipes I share here, this hot toddy is super easy. It is made with cranberry juice and a few spices and can be prepared with or without alcohol, as it’s added separately at the end. This hot toddy can be kept warming on the stove until ready to serve. Not only will it warm you up, but it will have your home smelling so perfect for the holiday season. Enjoy!
Here are a few more cozy drink recipes to warm you up:
- Coconut Milk Hot Chocolate Recipe
- Hot Buttered Rum
- Wassail Recipe
- Mulled Wine Recipe
- Lemon Ginger Tea Recipe
- Irish Coffee Recipe
Spiced Cranberry Hot Toddy Recipe
- 32 ounces pure cranberry juice
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon whole allspice
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 1-inch piece ginger peeled and thinly sliced
optional: 2 whole star anise
- 3/4 cup (or thereabouts) dark rum (bourbon or cognac may be substituted)
- Add cranberry juice, sugar, cinnamon sticks, allspice and ginger to a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar.
- Cover and simmer on low for about 10 minutes. Reduce heat and keep warm until ready to serve.
- Divide into individual mugs, stir in desired amount of rum, enjoy warm.
Originally posted November 25, 2014.