Cold Weather is the time for Hot Drinks


Are you out of ideas for that certain someone on your holiday list ?

Consider the following – a copy of our  Hot Drinks book ( 50 original recipes concocted by Bob and me that feature coffee, tea, cider, cocoa, liqueurs, etc. in  a mouth-watering and delicious array of intriguing flavors and aromas ) along with some key ingredients for stocking a hot-drinks pantry:

  • soft Ceylon cinnamon sticks
  • whole cardamom pods
  • star anise
  • peppermint twizzle sticks
  • rich hot chocolate or hot cocoa mix
  • spices for mulled-cider
  • Chai tea
  • Holiday Blend coffee

We are really proud of this little book and we love the recipes that we created. Our goal was to put a delicious new spin on some classic favorite drinks as well as to come up some wonderful combinations using comtemporary ingredients. We love it when customers tell us how much they love our book, and that are working their way through all of the recipes. Everyone seems to have a different favorite !

Here is a sneak-peek of one of our recipes that is  just perfect for the holiday season ( and you can see two others in my December 16, 2007 and January 1, 208 posts )  –

Hot Speculatius
In Germany and Holland, the Christmas holidays wouldn’t be complete without a selection of traditional spiced cookies. This hot drink was created in honor of lebkuchen, the popular German gingerbread cookie, and speculatius, Hollands thin, crisp windmill-shaped alomnd cookie. This wonderfully rich and creamy drink is  the perfect messenger of holiday cheer.

Serves 2

2 cups whole milk
3 & 1/2 ounces marzipan, chopped
1 tablespoon ( 1/2 ounce) amaretto
4 tablespoons ( 2 ounces) Bailey’s Irish Cream
2 tablespoons ( 1 ounce) ginger brandy
large pinch of ground cinnamon
large pinch of ground cloves
pinch of ground cardamom

Combine the milk, marzipan, amaretto, Bailey’s and ginger brandy in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Stir occasionally to incorporate the marzipan. Lower the heat and simmer gently until just heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cimmanon, cloves, and cardamom, and simmer for another 2 minutes to release the aromatic oils from the spices.

Strain into two large mugs and enjoy – with or without a namesake cookie.


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