Hot drinks for cold weather

Sept. 21, 2014, 4:27 p.m. | By Arthi Vijaykumar | 9 years, 9 months ago

One of the best parts of the fall and winter is being able to enjoy a warm beverage when it's chilly outside. However, most of us are not seasoned chefs or baristas. With that in mind, here are some recipes for hot drinks that you can't mess up.

Cardamom chai

Cardamom chai is a popular accompaniment to afternoon snacks in India. But don't let the name phase you; it's actually pretty easy to make. Here's my mom's recipe for this fragrant and filling drink.

1 teaspoon loose leaf orange pekoe tea
1 cup milk
1 pod of cardamom, crushed into a coarse powder
1 or more teaspoons sugar (depending on how sweet you want it to be)

First, start warming the milk on the stove. When the milk is warm, add tea and cardamom. Let the tea come to a boil, then take it off of the stove. Finally, strain the tea into a mug, add sugar and stir.

Cinnamon hot chocolate

Hot chocolate is a classic drink for colder days. This spiced twist on the iconic beverage is sure to warm you up from the inside.

1 cup milk
1 stick cinnamon
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2-ish teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons water
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

First, heat the milk with the cinnamon stick until just simmering. Combine the cocoa powder, sugar and water in a separate mug until it makes a paste. Remove the cinnamon from the milk and strain it into the mug, add vanilla extract and stir.

A London Fog is the essential comfort drink. Photo courtesy of Brewed Daily.

London Fog

London Fog is a tea latte made from vanilla and Earl Grey, a bergamot infused black tea. It gained popularity after appearing on Starbucks menus around the country. With this recipe, you can enjoy this sweet and creamy tea latte from the comfort of your own home.

1 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ tablespoon loose leaf Earl Grey tea
2 cups water
½ cup milk

First make a sugar vanilla syrup by combining the vanilla extract, sugar, and a cup of water in a sauce pan. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer until the syrup thickens after about 20 minutes. Take it off of the heat and let it stand until cool.

To make the drink, add the tea to one cup of boiling water in a kettle or a sauce pan and let steep for three to five minutes. Heat milk in a separate sauce pan, but don't boil it. Remove the milk from the heat when it is around 140 degrees Fahrenheit and whisk until it becomes foamy. Finally, fill a mug halfway with tea, add two tablespoons of the vanilla syrup and fill it the rest of the way up with milk.

Tags: Blazers Cardamom Chai cinnamon hot chocolate London Fog non-alcoholic beverages

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