WINTER FRIENDLY HOT BEVERAGES:

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Beverages can very easily be worked into a course as well if you plan on having different courses. Gluwein, Port and Sherry make for perfect arrival drinks while hot chocolate, Horlicks or a special coffee is the perfect send-off into the cold.

Rather than discussing it to death, have a look at a few examples of hot beverages that can be considered with a winter menu:HotDrink-e1419357192634

  • Masala or Chai Tea (Indian curries or biryani; can also double as an artificially sweetened dessert)
  • Warm Mulled Cider (simmer apple cider with mulling spices, orange zest, ginger – smells good too. Can also top it with whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel)
  • Spiced Cacao (mix cinnamon and chili flakes into hot chocolate for a spicy difference to a Mexican Fiesta)
  • Gluwein (Jazz it up with fresh cranberries and juice)
  • Horlicks (Be different and toast the marshmallows first before topping it for that extra special something)
  • Minty Cacao dessert (add a scoop of mint ice cream to your hot chocolate for a dessert)
  • Hot Toddy (add Frangelico to boiling water and top with whipped cream. Sprinkle with chopped hazelnut)
  • Magic Chocolate (add chocolate chips to boiling milk and use a candy cane as a swizzle stick)
  • White Spiced Coffee (blend cinnamon sticks, cardamom, and honey in coffee-steeped milk and add a splash of dark rum, if desired.
  • S’mores Hot Chocolate (toasted marshmallows and a graham cracker rim with hot chocolate)
  • Cinnamon Cappuccino (with whipped cream or froth that is sprinkled with fresh nutmeg)
  • Bourbon Citrus Sipper (brew apple, cinnamon, cloves and citrus with hot water and bourbon in your slow-cooker from early. House will smell good too)
  • Hot Coconut Milk (with a dash of coconut rum, white chocolate melted in and topped with whipped cream/coconut cream and shavings of milk chocolate)
  • Citrus Cranberry Sipper (citrus-teabags, Cranberry juice, orange juice, vodka, boiling water and cinnamon sticks to swizzle)
  • Hot Russian (piping hot milk with Vodka and coffee liquer)
  • Irish Coffee (Black coffee with heated whiskey and a dollop of fresh cream)
  • Hot Cranberry Punch (half cranberry juice, half boiling water infused with sage leaves and peppercorns)
  • Bran’s Dram (hot berry herbal tea with a shot of white rum)
  • Milk and cookies (an original departure snack, especially if the milk is ‘doctored’ with Amarula or coffee liquer)

mint-cocoa_300The host/hostess must always remember three things when it comes to beverage planning: the wine, budget and calorie counter. Pair your wine with your main course. You can easily break the bank if you do not carefully plan and budget your beverage situation. Also remember that many of these recipes mentioned above must be calculated into your overall calorie consumption. Rather replace full cream with low fat (fat free might alter the taste but low fat still retains the original palette) and sugar with artificial sweetener (only Aspartame is unhealthy and cancer-risky, rather go with healthier sweeteners like Xylitol, Stevia, Sucralose or Saccharine) Keep an eye on the calories in alcohol too. Be savvy on where you can slice on the calories without compromising the taste.

 

 

 

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