I love any excuse to cuddle. It could be with myself in a favorite sweater, with the puppy when he’s done playing tug-o-war for the day, I’ll even put myself through scary movies (despite my tendency for crazy dreams) if it means another excuse for Rob & I to cuddle up on the couch. On evenings when sweaters, puppy cuddles and scary movies are all on the agenda, a warm and comforting dinner seems about right too. Soup in bread bowls, whiskey cocktails and anything involving caramel and apples all fit the bill for me.
Spicy Cheddar Beer Soup (inspired by this recipe) serves 42 cups chicken stock 1 jalapeno, de-seeded and ribs removed (if you like it super spicy, keep some of the seeds in) 2 potatoes, baked and quartered 2 granny smith apples, quarters and de-seeded 1/4 medium onion, peeled 1 stalk celery 1/8-1/4 teaspoon dried sage 1/8-1/4 teaspoon nutmeg pinch of white pepper 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded and divided into 6 oz and 2 oz servings 3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled 4 sourdough bread bowls
Combine all of the ingredients, except for the cheese in a blender. Once everything is extremely well blended and smooth, add 6 ounces of the cheese and blend for a few more seconds. The hot potatoes should heat the rest of the soup up, but if it’s not hot enough, pour into a pot and heat over medium heat until warmed through. Serve in 4 sourdough bread bowls topped with remaining cheddar and the crumbled bacon.
Apple Cider & Whiskey makes 1 drink
Apple Cider2 ounces Red Stag Hardcore Apple Cider Whiskey ice
In a rock glass, drop three-four pieces of ice. Pour the whiskey over ice and then top with enough apple cider to fill the glass.
Caramel Apple Nachos2 granny smith or gala apples (depending on your preference) your favorite caramel dip or sauce peanut butter and milk chocolate chips
Slice the apples around the core so you have 4 pieces. Lay each piece on the flat part and thinly slice the apples into “chips” (You can watch this video for a visual, go straight to the 3 minute mark.) Once you’ve got all your “chips” spread them out on a large plate, drizzle with the caramel and then sprinkle with a small handful of the chocolate and peanut butter chips. Then decide whether or not you want to share ;-).