Spiced with cinnamon sticks, allspice and caramel, this warm-you-up sipper is sure to chase away winter's chill. Serve brimming mugs of the hot beverage alongside a platter of festive cookies at your next holiday gathering. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
I came up with this recipe one year when I attempted to make grape jelly and ended up with 30 jars of delicious grape syrup instead. I then simmered the syrup with spices to make this beverage. —Sharon Harmon, Orange, Massachusetts
One day friends and I were swapping recipes for hot chocolate, and someone came up with this mix. I put it in jars as gifts for Christmas. Now I keep a big batch in a large tin for us and so visitors can help themselves if they want! —Susan Prillhart, Rockledge, Florida
Meet the Cook: Here in the High Sierras, my husband and I operate a small bed and breakfast inn. I like serving this drink to winter guests as they warm up in front of our stone fireplace - it's a favorite with everyone for its heavenly scent! It's also a standby when we host local groups, who frequently meet at our place.
I learned to cook from my mother. I have been at it since I was a girl. My husband and I have six grown children and a total of 11 grandchildren.
-Marlene Cartwright, Sierra City, California
When I first developed this version of hot chocolate, my husband was quite skeptical. But after one taste, his doubts were erased. It really hits the spot on a chilly morning, especially when served with cinnamon rolls or doughnuts. —Darlene Miller, Linn, Missouri
One of the best things about holiday cooking is the aromas that drift through the whole house! To me, it wouldn't be Christmas without the tang of oranges, cinnamon and cloves in the air-just what you'll smell as this fresh cranberry punch is simmering.
To get the brightest red color in your punch, be sure to pick out the reddest of the fresh berries as you clean them.
This delicious, not-too-sweet hot chocolate is richly flavored with cocoa and delicately seasoned with spices. The whole-stick cinnamon stirrers come in handy, as the old-fashioned chocolate mixture settles if not stirred before drinking. The blend of cinnamon and chocolate flavors is wonderful! —Kathy Young, Weatherford, Texas