Tuesday’s Tip: Easy Fancy Fall Drinks

November 01,2011
Sweet Pea Chef
Jessica Efird( )

Jessica, aka the Sweet Pea Chef, is a former U.S. Senate staffer/weekend gourmet turned full-time mom/family gourmet. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband and two sons.

Happy November!

Did you survive the sugar onslaught last night?  We had a good night and over the next few days we’ll come up with our annual plan to purge the candy.  I have a few thoughts, one of which I will share later this week!

But in the meantime, it is November and we were mere weeks from Thanksgiving and Christmas.  There will be lots of fall and holiday entertaining going on over the next month or so and I have a quick tip to turn cider into a fancy (the boys’ term, not mine) drink.

A simple tip to make your cider go from ho-hum to really special:  flavor it with a cinnamon stick and vanilla bean.

All you need to do is use butcher’s twine or the like and tie the cinnamon stick and vanilla bean, that has been scored slightly with a knife, together:

Then, you suspend it over the pitcher, using a chopstick or something similar that will prevent it from falling into the pitcher:

Pour the cider into the pitcher, making sure that the cinnamon and vanilla are submerged.  Let the cinnamon and Vanilla “marinate” in the cider for at least several hours before serving, up to 12 or more hours, depending on how strong a flavoring you want in your cider.  You can do a few taste tests and as soon as the desired flavor is achieved, you can remove the cinnamon stick and vanilla bean.

Voila!  Cinnamon and Vanilla flavored Cider, a fancy drink!  

Life is sweet,