Spirits: Is your toddy a hottie?
Hot drinks -- in particular the Apple Toddy and the Gingered Rum Toddy -- have been the topic of, um, heated debate this week. Readers have been sending me their own recipes for toddies, mulled wine and cider, and some drinks that defy categorization, such as the hot chocolate-and-butterscotch-schnapps that someone suggested in the Free Range chat on Wednesday.
Hot toddies, of course, are not the only way to enjoy warm beverage on a cold night. One of my all-time favorites is Hot Buttered Rum; I have also made this drink with bourbon and with apple brandy to nice effect. Mulled wines, such as German gluhwein or the traditional Scandinavian glögg, are also wonderful at this time of year. Then there is the old-time classic Tom & Jerry, which is sort of like a hot eggnog. Paul Clarke at Serious Eats published a good Tom & Jerry recipe a few years back that I still use.
Of course, there's a whole universe of coffee-plus-booze cocktails: Irish Coffee (Irish whiskey, teaspoon of sugar, and coffee); Mexican Coffee (tequila, Kahlua, coffee, and a little whipped cream); Jamaican Coffee (Jamaican rum, Tia Maria, coffee, and whipped cream). Then there's the basic Cafe Brulot, in which you float an ounce-and-a-half of Cognac in black coffee, and light it on fire (there's also a version served in New Orleans that involves citrus peels, spices and orange liqueur).
Since most people have a go-to hot cocktail, I'm curious to know what yours is. If you have a special recipe, post it below in the comments.
Also, in my column, I mentioned that I've been drinking my hot toddies in a mug that reads "Being Forty Is Twice as Sexy as Twenty." If you think you can top that mug for "toddyness," then take a photo of your hot toddy in your own mug and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org -- the funniest mug will win a signed copy of my book, Boozehound.