The Fall Flavors series is winding down, but I couldn’t let it end without one more recipe. More than one of our guest writers shared their love for all things apple, and I completely agree that this particular fall flavor is one that I look forward to all year long. We love to head to the orchard and pick a peck of fresh, juicy, honeycrisp apples. YUM! I also love to pick up some fresh-squeezed apple juice and then bring it home and make spiced cider. The spices create an aroma that fills my house, and instantly makes it feel like autumn. So grab these ingredients and whip up this warm and tasty beverage on a brisk fall day–you won’t be disappointed!
:: ingredients ::
1 quart apple juice or cider
1 cinnamon stick
20 whole black peppercorns
3 whole cloves
1 to 2 tbsp. brown sugar
zest from 1/2 lemon
:: directions ::
1) Toast cinnamon, peppercorns, and cloves over medium heat in a pot large enough to hold all the apple juice. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Once the spices become very aromatic (after about a minute or two), they are done.
2) Pour apple juice into the pan, turn heat to high, and bring to a boil. As the juice heats, add the brown sugar and stir until it dissolves.
3) After the apple juice has boiled, reduce heat to a simmer, and then add the lemon zest. Simmer for 30 minutes.
4) Strain the cider using a fine mesh strainer.
5) Serve hot, and enjoy!