When autumn comes and temperatures drop, it's a great excuse to kick out the cold drinks in return for something warm to hold in your fingers. Whether you're a restaurant manager looking for something creative to bring guests in or an industrial worker who likes to come home after a long day on your feet, kick off your work shoes and grab a fall beverage, here are a few suggestions for hot drinks that feel good going down and taste great!
1. Try apple cider with a fruity twist
Hot apple cider is an autumn classic – it pairs perfectly with apple picking and leaf-peeping. Better Homes and Gardens magazine suggested a unique twist on this old favorite by adding a bit of pomegranate.
The magazine advised people to combine apple cider, pomegranate juice and maple sugar in a kettle or pot. Then you can mix thin orange peels, cinnamon sticks, lightly crushed cardamom pods, cloves and thinly sliced apples in a bag made of cheese cloth. Put the bag in the heating liquid mixture for extra flavor.
It's not a science, so feel free to change up the ingredients a bit to suit your tastes. For example, brown sugar may be preferable to syrup or cranberry juice to pomegranate. The goal is to mix sweet and bitter with traditional fall flavors for an exotic, tasty drink.
2. Make your own chai
Chai is a delicious beverage that people drink all over the world. If you've tasted this sweet, warm, creamy beverage at restaurants and wanted to recreate it for yourself, Real Simple magazine has advice for making this drink at home.
You'll need to crush cardamom seeds, cloves and black peppercorns, then mix them into a medium-heat skillet with cinnamon sticks, ginger and about 2 cups of whole milk. Once it boils, you can steep a few black tea bags in the hot liquid for about 10 minutes and add sugar. Strain into cups and serve, the magazine recommended. You'll have a hot, creamy beverage ready for afternoon tea time or bedtime, if you make it without caffeine.
3. Experience rich hot chocolate
Hot chocolate isn't just a drink reserved for children. It makes an excellent after-work treat that's sweet and delicious. But there's something lacking when you mix hot water with powdered instant hot chocolate. Martha Stewart Living magazine gave readers her recipe for an easy, tasty instant alternative.
The magazine advised readers to heat milk in a saucepan until nearly boiling. Then it's time to add flavor if you want. Some people like a bit of cinnamon or vanilla, but if you're a true chocoholic, you may want to leave it alone. When the milk is hot, mix in your chocolate of choice – milk, semi-sweet, dark. Chocolate chips work well because they're small and melt quickly. Mix the chocolate in until it's all melted and look for the milk to froth, the magazine explained – this means it's ready. Feel free to serve with marshmallows.
4. Taste a healthy pumpkin latte
Pumpkin lattes are hugely popular in the fall. But when you go out to a coffee shop to buy one for yourself, not only can it end up costing a lot, but it can be loaded with fat and calories too. Shape magazine published a recipe that allows people to make a simple, low-fat version of this seasonal favorite.
Rather than using sugar and cream, Shape advised people to take advantage of the lower calories of soy milk and agave syrup. Just brew yourself one cup of black coffee and pour it into a fun mug. Then, add in the heated soy milk and agave syrup. Stir. Spoon in about a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice to taste. Top the whole thing off with some nonfat whipped cream to keep it festive and fun. Despite its low calorie count, this drink is delicious.
5. Experiment with white coffee
While you're trying out coffee drinks like the beloved pumpkin latte, test your taste buds with some white spiced coffee, Country Living magazine recommended.
This beverage takes a bit longer than the others to make, but it's worth it. You'll need the familiar ingredients of green cardamom pods and cinnamon sticks as well as lightly cracked whole coffee beans, whole milk and honey. For about seven minutes, you need to heat the cracked beans in milk then steep the beans in the milk for another 15 without heat. The magazine then advised you to strain out the beans, mix the milk with the other ingredients in a blender then strain into a saucepan, reheat and serve. You'll be left with a tasty spiced coffee that doesn't look at all like your typical cup of joe.
If that's all too much work, consider adding a pinch of cinnamon to your morning coffee. It'll give you a bit of extra flavor and help you feel in the fall mood.
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