The first snowfall of the season has a magical sort of effect on me. Not because I like winter I bask in the glory of the summer sun. But this season stirs a desire to turn inwards. To slow down. To get cozy and comfortable and focus my attentions on nourishing myself and my loved ones. I obsessively search for soup recipes. I revive my struggling sourdough starter. And I make apple cider! Nothing smells quite as lovely as the cinnamon sweetness simmering on the stove. And it looks so pretty too!
Some recipes call for added sugar, but I prefer mine sugar-free! The kids love it and start requesting it as soon as the weather starts to cool. I often bring some in a thermos or carafe for our outdoor adventures for a healthier alternative to hot chocolate.
approximately 2 liters apple juice ( I use 2 jars of my home processed apple juice)
1 Tb whole cloves
3 cinnamon sticks
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice
1 orange, sliced with peel on
Insert cloves into sliced oranges
Combine all ingredients in stockpot.
Stir over medium-low heat.
Simmer over medium heat for about 30 minutes
Strain before serving!