I’m an all or nothing kind of girl.
Today, I blame Fran. And Costco.
A few of us decided to order lunch from the Taco Truck today. There is one other vegan on staff (Fran) and we always split a veggie burrito sans sour cream and cheese. Today she didn’t want Taco Truck. Surprise, surprise, everyone else wanted cheese/sour cream/chicken and no one wanted to go halvsies with me.
I ate that whole blasted burrito by myself.
Then, after school, the kidlets and I headed to Costco to pick up Christmas cards, maple syrup and strawberries. Necessities, right?
Well, we hit the sample jackpot. I did ignore the multiple cheese samples, but imbibed in peppermint bark (swoon), madeleines (light as a feather) and cashew clusters (a favorite).
After the eats of today, you’d think I’d be craving a big fat salad or maybe a pile of roasted veg?
Nope. For dinner I ate bread and chocolate. I wish I was making this up. It’s true. Embarrassing, but true. Like I mentioned, I’m all or nothing. Today’s theme was apparently “all”.
Let’s get something straight here. There’s nothing healthy about this recipe. It’s vegan, but it’s not healthy. Do you think they’ll kick me out of the party?
The recipe is as simple as it gets. Apple juice is mixed with delightful spices, whole and ground.
Don’t let my assistant’s focused look fool you- it’s easy!
Here’s where it gets good (or bad, depending on your perspective). Sugar. Dark brown sugar is added to this delightful seasonal mix of warmth and goodness.
FYI: that is not a glob of butter floating in the cider- its a nub of fresh ginger. I’m bad, but I’m not evil.
“But it really doesn’t need the sugar with all those spices,” the angel on your right shoulder is screaming.
“But it’s good, so good,” the devil on your left shoulder whispers.
And he’s right.
You can be as creative as you want with spices. I was tempted to dump in some cardamom pods, but worried that the flavor wouldn’t blend with star anise.
We sipped ours by the tree. And when I say sipped, I mean guzzled. And when I say guzzled, I mean spilled. Oh well. It’s an all or nothing day, maybe I should bring out the finger paints…and the chocolate …
I’ll behave tomorrow…
Spiced brown sugar apple cider
4 cups apple juice
1/4 to 1/3 cup dark brown sugar (I used 1/3 and it was plenty sweet)
Small handful whole allspice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 star anise pod
1 whole nutmeg
1 small nub fresh ginger
Combine all ingredients in medium saucepan. Warm over low heat until simmering and sugar has dissolved. The longer you simmer, the better the flavor. I could only wait 15 minutes. Strain into mugs and enjoy.