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A Hot Somerset Toddy, To Keep Out The Halloween Chill

Halloween Sunday here in Somerset, UK, is forecast to be a dull, drizzly day, with a rather chilly night, so I thought that my contribution to ‘Beth Fish Reads’, Weekend Cooking Meme, should be something hot and warming.

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Somerset, is the traditional home of real ‘Scrumpy’ Cider, so I thought that a recipe for a local, warming ‘hot toddy’, may be just what we need.

Hot toddy is a name given to a mixed drink, usually including alcohol, that is served hot. Hot toddies (such as mulled Cider) are traditionally drunk before going to bed, or in wet and/or cold weather.

Mulled Cider is a traditional English winter drink and this version gives a special appley edge to the usual recipe.

  • 10 English apples, cores removed
  • Soft brown sugar
  • 100 ml cider

Preheat the oven to 190oC, gas mark 5.

Place apples on a baking sheet and fill the centres with sugar. Pour the cider over the apples and bake for about 40 minutes or until soft and bursting.

While the apples are cooking, prepare the punch.

  • 2 pieces of lemon rind
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 cloves
  • 1 litre dry cider
  • ¼litre Calvados
  • 1½litre apple juice

Tie the lemon rind and spices together in a piece of muslin to make a spice bag. Put it in a large pan with the cider, Calvados and apple juice. Heat through. Add the cooked apples with all their juices. Serve warm in mugs or heatproof glasses.

Adults only, of course. Strictly not for the children, they will have already had their fun!!

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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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  • Hi Beth,

    The aroma of cinnamon and apples always makes me think of Christmas.

    It’s definitely not a drink to have if you are watching the calories, but once in a while it can’t be that bad???

    Baked apples make a great dessert as well. I prepare them in much the same way, but add some dried fruit with the brown sugar, a tiny dash of brandy and a little butter. Cook the same way, but just until the apples are soft, before they burst. Great with Greek yoghurt, ice-cream, or if you are feeling really naughty, double cream.

  • Hi Rikki,

    The word toddy, just conjures up an image of something alcoholic and yummy, doesn’t it?

    The word is reported to be Scottish in origin and would have traditionally been prepared with Scottish whiskey.

  • Well, that sounds very nice… lovely and warming for a chilly autumnal evening. We made butternut squash soup today and that too is really rather nice. I do love autumn/winter meals.

  • Hi Cath,

    I also love soup, almost any flavour, so long as it is thick, wholesome and warming. Preferably served with thick cut, crusty bread.

  • Hi Caite,

    Sometimes the aroma of food or drink, is better than the actual taste. Fresh baked bread, freshly brewed coffee and warm cinnamon are some of my favourite smells.

  • Hi Heather,

    A great Christmas drink as well.

    Maybe then, any slight mishaps with the roast dinner may go unnoticed?

  • Sounds very yummy and warming…I can just imagine a cold winter day…wrapped in a blanket watching the leaves blow around through the window…and enjoying a cozy cup of this delightful sounding (and smelling) beverage….mmmmmmmm 🙂

  • Hi Patti

    The leaves are definitely swirling around now, but it is so mild for November 1st, it is incredible.

    The temperatures are just set to rise and rise this week, to almost summer levels, even during the night and a couple of days are supposed to be sunny with clear blue skies.

    The seasons are completely out of sync this year. Everyone says that we will be having a bad winter when it does arrive, but I really hope not.

    Still, if winter is that bad and cold, then this drink could come into it’s own, on more than one occasion, Mmmm!

  • Hello Esme,

    There are some great Ciders being produced these days.
    When we were first married, over 30 years ago and money was in short supply, we would get ‘rough’ cider straight from the farm. It still contained unprocessed apple and was practically fermenting as you were drinking it, but it was inexpensive.
    The idea of being able to have it as a mulled drink, wouldn’t have quite worked, I don’t think!!!

Written by Yvonne