Cold Weather, Hot Drinks

When it is cold and rainy outside, I love to curl up with a hot cup of tea and a book. Even though Spring (hopefully!) is just around the corner, I wanted to share some wonderful recipes for hot drinks before the long winter finally leaves. These are all perfect for a cold winter or chilly spring day! Hope you enjoy!

Spiced Winter Tea

1 cinnamon stick
3 cloves
1 star anise
3-4 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
4 cups water
1 heaping Tablespoon Indian leaf tea, such as Darjeeling
or Assam
Sugar, to taste
4-6 Tablespoons sweetened condensed milk (optional)

Put cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and cardamom pods in a saucepan, add the water and bring
to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer gently 5 minutes, then add the loose tea. Stir well,
cover, and let infuse for 5 minutes. Strain into a warmed teapot, serve and sweeten as desired.

The finest Hot Chocolate

3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, broken into pieces
1 Tablespoon superfine sugar, or to taste
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1 1/4 cups milk
1/3 cup heavy cream or whipping cream, whipped
grated chocolate or cocoa powder, to sprinkle

Put the chocolate pieces, sugar, vanilla bean, and milk in a saucepan. Heat gently, stirring,
until the chocolate has melted, then bring to a boil, whisking constantly until smooth and frothy.
Remove the vanilla bean and serve with whipped cream. Serves 2.

Peanut Butter Crunch

2 cups milk
3 Tablespoons natural peanut butter
1 Tablespoon maple syrup
1/4 cup whipping cream
ground cinnamon, to serve

Put the milk, peanut butter, and maple syrup in a saucepan and heat gently, stirring
constantly, until it just reaches boiling point and the peanut butter has melted. Whip the
cream and serve with the whipped cream and dust with a little cinnamon.

(All recipes from the book Hot Drinks)

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