winter elixirs

January 16, 2011

I’m a big fan of tea and my enthusiasm extends to most hot drinks that nourish the body, heart, and soul. Here are two that I just found in a new cookbook I bought a couple of weeks ago, Leon. Make a batch or two of these concentrated “coldbusters”, and keep them in a jar by the stove so you can top them up with hot water when the need strikes.


1 vanilla pod

2 litres apple juice

1/2 cup maple syrup

1 cinnamon stick

6 cloves

3 star anise

grated nutmeg

Split the vanilla pod in half and scrap out the seeds. Pour the apple juice into a saucepan and add the maple syrup and all the spices. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 30 – 40 minutes until it has reduced by just over half. Pour into a sterilized bottle and leave for the flavours to meld. Fill your cup with about 1/4 hot apple mull, top up with boiling water, and bottoms up. This would also be great with some brandy – the only alcohol my teatotalling grandmother would keep in the house in the name of medicine.


400 ml lemon juice

four “fat thumbs” worth of ginger root, grated

2 big bunches of rosemary

10 tbsps honey

Heat the lemon juice with the ginger and rosemary. Once warm, stir in the honey until dissolved. Turn off the heat. Cool, then pour into a sterilized bottle, including the rosemary. To make a coldbuster, pour 4 tbsps of “lemony love” into a mug and top up with boiling water. You can stir in a little extra honey or maple syrup if you prefer sweet to sour.

One Response to “winter elixirs”

  1. Kelsey Blackwell Says:

    The mull sounds fan-tastic, going to try it with Theo!

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