17 December 2013

Angela's Holiday Spiced (not spiked!) Punch

We had a few friends and students over for Thanksgiving this year, and my homemade punch turned out to be so popular, everyone asked me for the recipe.  So I'll share it here, along with some photos from Thanksgiving, the school's winter concert, and Yerevan's first snow of the season -- all to get you in the holiday spirit!

I did not take this picture.  Isn't it pretty?

Angela's Holiday Spiced (not spiked!) Punch recipe

Because this recipe is alcohol-free, it's my favorite straight edge alternative to mulled wine. Perfect for kids, teens, pregnant moms, and anyone who loves a tasty hot beverage! (Toddlers love it, too, but you may decide to dilute it a bit if you think they'll find the flavor too strong.)

Yields 2 liters of punch.
  • 1 liter apple juice or cider
  • 1 liter cherry juice (blackcurrant or something else tart would also work well)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • about 15-20 whole cloves
  • other optional spices, to taste: cardamom pods, star anise, orange peel, diced apple, etc.
Put the small spices in a tea ball or something that will make them easy to remove from the pot afterwards.  Boil all ingredients in a covered pot on the stove for 15 minutes or longer.  Keep tasting it until you can just taste the spices.  Important -- if you leave the cinnamon sticks and cloves in for too long (more than 30 minutes or so), the punch might get too "spicy."  So when the taste is to your liking, remove and discard the spices.  Ladle into mugs.  You can enjoy the punch while it's hot or put it in the fridge for a cold refreshment later!

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