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- Yield: 8 cups base
In this recipe, apple cider is simmered with a spice bag to make the base for a variety of Halloween drinks.
apple cider or apple juice (8 cups)
cinnamon honey, wildflower honey, orange blossom honey, or desired honey
coarsely chopped, peeled fresh ginger
bay leaf, optional
In a 4-quart Dutch oven, combine cider and honey. Add orange slices. For spice bag, place cinnamon, fresh ginger, allspice, cloves and bay leaf, if you like, in the center of a double-thick, 8- to 10-inch square of 100-percent-cotton cheesecloth. Tie closed with a clean string. Add spice bag to the saucepan with cider mixture. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Remove orange slices and spice bag; discard. If you like, strain mixture through a fine mesh sieve*. Use in the following party drinks. Makes about 8 cups base.
- Mulled Apple Cider: Prepare Haunted Halloween Party Punch Base as above. Serve warm base in mugs or heatproof glasses. If you like, garnish each serving with a cinnamon stick and a thin apple slice. Makes 8 (8-ounce) servings.
- Awfully Good Ghoul's Punch: Prepare Haunted Halloween Party Punch Base as above. Cool to room temperature. Transfer punch base to a large pitcher or punch bowl. Cover and chill for 4 to 24 hours.
- Awfully Good Ghoul's Punch: In a punch bowl, combine punch base; one 12-ounce can frozen cranberry-raspberry juice concentrate, thawed; one 6-ounce can frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed; and 3 cups cold water. Add ice, if you like. Thinly slice 1 medium apple. Float apple slices and cranberries in punch. Makes 18 (6-ounce) servings.
- Golden Apple Cocktails: Prepare Haunted Halloween Party Punch Base as above. For each serving, combine 2 to 3 tablespoons vodka, Southern Comfort, bourbon, apple brandy or brandy, rum, vermouth or dry white wine and 1/2 cup of the hot punch base in a mug or heatproof glass. Or, cover and chill punch base until completely cool. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons desired alcohol and 1/2 cup of the chilled punch base to an ice-filled glass; stir. If you like, garnish each serving with an orange twist and a maraschino cherry on a cocktail pick. Makes 16 (5 to 6-ounce) cocktails.
- *If using a less processed apple cider, you will need to strain the cider mixture through a sieve lined with 100-percent-cotton cheesecloth.
Thiamin (mg) 0, iron (mg) 1, Riboflavin (mg) 0, vit. C (mg) 2, sodium (mg) 8, Potassium (mg) 306, calcium (mg) 20, carb. (g) 46, cal. (kcal) 180, sugar (g) 44, Pyridoxine (Vit. B6) (mg) 0, Niacin (mg) 0