Whether you have a relaxed family get together, a festive formal dinner or an impromptu night time tipple planned, we have collected a selection of recipes that will help you prepare for every occasion.
We have picked all of our favorite recipes celebrating herbs and spices, centered around the classic scents and flavors of the Holidays.
For The Whole Family…
The World’s Best Homemade Chai Recipe
This Chai Concentrate inspired by Nifty Thrifty Things allows you to make delicious Chai whenever you feel like it. Using only natural ingredients, you know exactly what is in this concentrate, so you can have a guilt free experience.
– 4 inches of ginger
– 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
– 10 bags of standard black tea
– 10 cardamom pods
– ½ teaspoon of ground pepper
– ½ teaspoon of ground nutmeg
– 1 teaspoon of ground all spice
– 1 vanilla bean
– 5 star anise
– 3 sticks of cinnamon
– 4 ½ cups of water
– Cinnamon powder for dusting once finished
Combine all ingredients in a pan, bring to the boil. Once boiling bring down to a simmer for an hour. Once infused nicely, strain the mixture, add the sugar to sweeten. Then use a funnel to transfer the mixture into a glass bottle that can be kept in the refrigerator. When the cold weather kicks in, simply heat up some milk, making sure you use 50/50 ratio of chai concentrate and milk, sprinkle with cinnamon and enjoy!
Eggnog and Christmas go in hand in hand. This simple recipe can be enjoyed by the whole family (or just the adults if you spike it with bourbon). We have used cinnamon and clove, but the beauty of this recipe is that you can change it up depending on your favorite herbs and spices.
Ingredients: (serves 6)
– 4 egg yolks
– 2 cups of milk
– 1 cup of cream
– ½ cup of sugar
– 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
– 1 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg
– 2 whole cloves
– Pinch of cinnamon
– (Adult option – 2 tablespoons of your favorite bourbon)
Using a whisk, mix the egg yolks and slowly add the sugar until light and fluffy. In a separate pan combine the cloves, cinnamon and milk until simmering but not boiling. Slowly add the milk mixture into the egg mixture whisking constantly. Then pour back into the pan and heat on a medium heat, stirring the mixture until it begins to thicken, be careful not to let it boil and curdle. Once suitably thickened, remove from the heat and stir in the cream. Strain the mixture to remove the cloves and let it cool. Once cooled, stir in the nutmeg and vanilla extract (add the bourbon now if you like). Se
rve or keep in the refrigerator and serve when your guests arrive.
Family Friendly Peppermint Punch
This great recipe is simple, very quick and is a real crowd pleaser, serve this at your next Festive get together and you will have kids and adults wanting more.
– 4 cups of Peppermint ice cream
– 1 cup of milk
– 4 cups of your favorite ginger ale
Get your favorite punch bowl, put your ice cream in and let is soften. Once softened, blend in the milk and the ginger ale. Serve to your guests immediately for the best taste.
This will make a great base for any festive vodka cocktail. So get creative…
Ingredients (makes 1 litre):
– 3 bay leaves
– 1 quartered nutmeg
– 1 teaspoon of cloves
– 1 teaspoon of all spice berries
– 1 vanilla pod split length ways
– 1 litre of vodka
Put all ingredient into a glass jar, shake well and leave in a dark place for a month to infuse fully (the longer the better). Every now and again give it a good shake to help the spices and herbs infuse better.
Hot Rummy Lemonade
This fantastic recipe inspired by Jamie Oliver will get any party in the festive mood. A real winter warmer with a fiery kick.
Ingredients (makes 8 servings):
– 8 x 25 ml shots of your favorite Golden Rum
– 1 litre of cloudy apple juice
– ¾ litre of water
– 1 thumb sized piece of fresh ginger
– 1 cinnamon stick
– Juice of 4 lemons
– Runny honey
Put the water and apple juice in a large pan over a high heat. Add the cinnamon and sliced ginger. Once brought to the boil, turn the heat down and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Squeeze the lemon juice in, then strain the liquid through a sieve, increase the heat again, bring to the boil, add the runny honey to taste and stir well. Add a shot of Golden Rum to any heat proof glass and add the hot spiced lemonade. Enjoy…..
Hot Spiced Cider
Hot Spiced Cider can certainly warm up any occasion and tastes delicious, a great alternative to mulled wine.
– 1 ½ litres of medium dry cider
– 6 dried apricots
– 1 thinly sliced apple
– 4 whole sticks of cinnamon
– 12 whole cloves
– 8 whole allspice
– 4oz of soft brown sugar
Mix all ingredients into a pan and heat, wait until the sugar has dissolved and strain with a sieve. Serve in any heat proof glass and let your senses come alive.
For The Kids…
Caramel Apple Milkshakes
Caramel Apple Milkshakes are a great hot drink alternative for kids and even the big kids.
– 3/4 cup of milk
– 3 cups of frozen vanilla yoghurt
– 1 teaspoon cinnamon
– 1 drop of vanilla essence
– 1/2 cup apple sauce
– 1/4 cup caramel topping
Place all ingredients in a blender apart from the caramel topping. Serve in glasses and top with the Caramel.
Christmas Hot Chocolate
Christmas Hot Chocolate is the perfect Christmas Eve treat for any child waiting for Santa’s arrival.
Ingredients (Serves 2):
– 200ml full fat milk
– 30 grams of finely grated dark chocolate (you could use a festive flavored chocolate like orange and spice)
– ¼ tea spoon of ground cinnamon
– A pinch of grated nutmeg
– 4 table spoons of drinking chocolate powder
– Some squirty cream for the finishing touch
Heat the milk in a pan until almost boiling. In a heatproof jug bowl mix the drinking chocolate, grated chocolate, cinnamon and nutmeg until combined. Pour the nearly boiled milk into the jug and whisk until thick and creamy. Pour into your best festive mug, squirt with cream and decorate with some silvers balls or maltesers.
Hot Mulled Apple Juice
Hot Mulled Apple Juice lets the kids get involved whilst the grown-ups enjoy their alcoholic mulled wine.
Ingredients (serves 6):
– 1 ½ liters of apple juice
– Peel of 1 whole orange – cut into strips
– Peel of 1 whole lemon – cut into strips
– 4 tablespoons of maple syrup
– 2 whole cinnamon sticks
– 6 whole all spice berries
– 6 whole cloves
Put the maple syrup and apple juice into a pan. Meanwhile place the cinnamon sticks, allspice berries, lemon and orange peel and cloves into a muslin spice bag. Tie with string and place in the pan. Place the pan on a medium heat for 5-10, careful not to boil it. Once removed from heat, remove the muslin bag, and serve in heat proof glasses – Yum.