There comes a point, just a few days before Christmas, when one needs to step back and assess. Are you done? Almost done? Never going to be done? Answers will likely vary, but the ultimate conclusion should be the same: just be done. It is time to sit back, enjoy the Christmas tree and sip a hot toddy (or two).
Last week I was considering suggesting a festive holiday outing to the husband for Saturday night. The lights at Bellevue Botanical Garden? The lighted Solstice Walk at Powellswood Garden? Enchant at…whatever they’re calling Safeco Field these days?
I pondered. I considered. And I didn’t say a word. When all was said and done, what I really wanted to do was plug in the tree, light all of the candles and watch Christmas movies. Just him and I and a big orange cat. Away from all the hustle and bustle. It was a great way to spend an evening.
Around mid-afternoon I shut the bakery (kitchen) down and announced to the husband that it was time for a hot toddy. He suggested a rousing game of Sorry to go along with our hot toddy. In front of the Christmas tree. With the big orange cat. Twist my arm.
We turned on the gas fireplace for ambience, but it’s been pretty mild around here so it didn’t take long for the combination of the hot toddy and fireplace to make us sweat. Off went the fireplace.
Sorry was followed by Yahtzee, and another cocktail that I’ll share in the next post. I would like to note that I won all of the games. Victory! And the hot toddy? Spicy ginger, sweet maple, the smooth warmth of whiskey, an undertone of anise. It has been added to the list of “hot toddy worth drinking again…and again.”
Maple Ginger Hot Toddy (from Feasting at Home)
Makes one toddy:
4 slices ginger
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise pod
1 bag gingerbread tea (I found Bigelow Ginger Snappish at my local grocery store)
2 ounces Whiskey
1 ounce maple syrup
Squeeze of lemon
Muddle the ginger in the bottom of a sturdy mug. Add the cinnamon, star anise, whiskey, maple syrup and squeeze of lemon (I squeezed a nice-sized chunk, then dropped it in the cup). Add the tea bag. Heat hot water on stovetop (enough to fill the mug), pour over ingredients in mug and allow to steep 3-4 minutes. Stir. Adjust sweetness and boozes as you see fit.