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Here We Come A-wassailing

Happy snowy Monday to you all!

It never fails to happen – by the time my older brother’s birthday rolls around on Dec 9th, we have snow! Yesterday morning I woke up and timidly peeked out the window only to see that there seemed to be very little snow anywhere BUT the roads and driveway. Ironic, since I always say that I love snow, provided it’s anywhere but the roads and driveway.

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I had such a nice and relaxing weekend. Ben took Friday off so we spent the day together running errands. The first stop was to the chiropractor. I’ve been having neck and shoulder pain for more than a month now and just when I think it’s 95% better, I seem to wrench it again. After I was cracked back into place, we went to breakfast at the diner we used to frequent every week before Ben moved into the house we have now. I love eating there because they all know us.

On our way out, we asked to pay for the meal of an elderly couple that were seated near us.It wasn’t a large bill or anything and I’d never done anything like that before, but it made me feel so good. I read the stories online all the time about people who pay for the person behind them at the drive-thru, etc, and just really wanted to do something nice and spur-of-the-moment for someone else. I spent the rest of the day with a smile on my face wondering if they were surprised to learn their meal was paid for and if it made their day too.

We picked up some Christmas gifts that had arrived in town and I dragged Ben around to check out living room furniture. I’ve had my heart set on cream-colored leather for as long as I can remember and I keep my eyes peeled for a good deal – hoping soon!!

Our final stop was the grocery store to pick up ingredients for Ben’s latest project: wassail

Have any of you ever made wassail before? Neither of us had even ever tried it, but Ben had childhood memories of his mom entertaining the neighbors during tree-hopping and she would have a crockpot of wassail simmering all day. Because it had alcohol, it was off-limits to Ben and his brother. Now we’re adults and can make our own! 🙂

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(My hair is still falling out and what’s left is super-fine and super-straight! Eeep!)

While Ben measured out the apple cider, cranberry juice, and spices, my task was to stud the orange with cloves. I found that poking the clove directly into the orange caused a lot of crumbling and breaking. What worked better was to prick the orange with a fork and then push the cloves into the holes.

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A quick rinse to remove the crumbs and my orange was plopped into the wassail!

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We let it simmer for about 6 hours. It was delicious! If we made it again I think I’d buy one of those metal spice balls and put the allspice in that. It would have made fishing around for them much easier. We took the wassail over to share with friends and it sloshed around in the back of the car. Luckily Ben had a plastic bed down first. Still, his cat is smelling like oranges. 🙂

The boys added some additional brandy to the wassail but my girlfriend and I drank ours as-is. The whole batch had a cup of brandy in it but was adequately cooked out so you got a nice taste but not the bite or tipsyness (is that a word?)

Bolstered by the success of his wassail, Ben picked up a container of Tom & Jerry mix. Have you guys ever tried that stuff? Ben absolutely LOVES it and I think it’s the nastiest thing ever. I think I’m grossed out by the ingredients – all the hydrogenated oils, 4 kinds of sugar, mono & diglycerides, and cellulose gum makes it look nasty. I told Ben if he wants it again, we’re going to try to make the batter ourselves so it’s not so heinous.

It makes a pretty looking drink though – especially topped with a little nutmeg

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Although the wassail was wonderful, egg nog still reigns supreme on my holiday beverage list. Have any of you ever made wassail? How about Tom & Jerry? Are there any other holiday drinks you adore that I need to try?

 

 

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2 Responses

  1. I have always wanted to pay it forward like that. Need to find the right time and place, I guess.

    The eggnog latte is the supreme beverage of the holidays for me 😀

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