I hope you had a wonderful turkey day full of food, family, and friends. We certainly had our fill! Now that another Thanksgiving has come and gone, are you ready to jump into the Christmas season? If you were hanging out here last December, you discovered that this lover of red is also a lover of all things Christmas. I have been chomping at the bit to get started on decorating our home for the holidays. Last year, I did a series of posts on our Christmas Traditions. Remember these?
This year, I want to do a few posts about my holiday favorites. With that thought in mind, I want to start by sharing with you my all time favorite drink for get-togethers during cold months. If you are headed out shopping, just leave this beverage in your crock pot or percolator, and it will not only warm you when you return, but it will also make your entire house smell like Christmas. 🙂 The recipe comes from this wonderful cookbook.
When I was in college, I dated a young man who had relatives living in Mobile, Alabama. His mother ordered a number of these cookbooks from the relatives, and she gave me one for Christmas (and volume two the next year.) I have obviously used this one to the point of wearing out the cover! This was the first of Calling All Cooks. It was followed by three others, and there is a Best of Calling All Cooks available, too. All of them are chock full of delicious recipes that are easy and made with ingredients you normally have on hand in your pantry.
The recipe in the cookbook that I love, is for Hot Spiced Percolator Punch. That is the name they have given it. I call it our Hot Christmas Punch because we make it sooooo much in December for holiday parties. You can see that the book practically opens itself to the right page!
I am not going to make you read it from the book. Here is the recipe for making 10 cups. ( Of course you can multiply it for a large crowd.)
For years I borrowed my mother-in-law’s big percolator. Then we bought our own and used it for many years…so many that it wore out (much like the beloved cookbook. :)) Two years ago, after much research, we bought this one.
We use it for this punch and sometimes for hot water for hot cocoa. I have not used it for coffee, so I cannot vouch for how well it makes it, but I do really like it for our other hot drinks. It is noisy, but I think most percolators are. The one thing I would change in the design of it is it needs an on/off button. You plug it in and it starts. I would rather be able to leave it plugged in, and then just push a switch to make it work.
Okay back to the recipe…I do make mine in the percolator (or urn, as some people call it) but it could easily be made in a large stock pot on the stove or in a crock pot. I would change the spices from whole to ground if you are not using a percolator so that you do not have to work around them when serving. The substitute from whole to ground spices would be 1/2 teaspoon for the cinnamon and 1 teaspoon for the cloves…but I like a strong flavor of the spices, so it would be fine to use more. (I was out of whole cloves today, so I substituted ground cloves for them .) I also add more sugar. The cranberry juice makes it quite tart, so I think it needs a little more sweetness.
Oh my goooodness does it smell like Christmas when it is perking! We use the little red cups for serving a crowd, but since I am going to be sipping on this all day as I decorate for the house, I used my Christmas mug. 🙂
It is especially cozy on this frosty morning.
We are off to get a Christmas tree today! I hope your weekend is full of family fun. I will be back with some Christmas decorating and a giveaway for you in my next post!