It’s been gray, damp and dreary where I live. It’s so blah and depressing, it can attract all sorts of melancholy thoughts and sad memories, as the chill moves up from the toes and threatens to move into the heart and head.
Back off, I say.
But then again, this is perfect napping weather. as long as you can cuddle up with something hot and steamy, and I don’t mean Hugh Jackman. I’m going along the lines of something you can pour in a cup and sip, although I wouldn’t mind having a mug of something like Hugh if the opportunity came along.
Here are some examples of steamy hotness that get me (and hopefully, you) through bouts of dull weather or spates of blues.
Chocolate is my happy drug of choice. The first mouthful is the best. It’s when I feel an overwhelming sense of relief, which brings out a sigh that releases all that pent up tension, and suddenly all is right in the world. Chocolate is seriously magical stuff.
Order it, make it from a mix, or make it from scratch, it’ll hit the spot as long as it’s intense and concentrated — I would use two packs of mix if one is too weak.
The best hot chocolate I’ve ever had is from a Max Brenner’s cafe. They serve it in this humongous custom-made mug that fits perfectly in my hand, radiating warmth and happy energy. The concoction itself was Mayan bliss! It packed an extra zing — a hit of chili, nutmeg, cinnamon, and pepper. Woohoo!
The use of warm, earthy, sexy spices — such as cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, star anise — make these other drinks all the more cuddle-worthy.
Masala Chai, which literally means “spiced tea”, otherwise known simply as “chai”, can be made by steeping tea with a mix of spices, such as cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, cloves and ginger. It transforms your regular black tea into something so exotic and fragrant and gorgeous. It’s wonderful with milk, but I also love it without.
Here’s a recipe from Sanjeev Kapoor.
Hot Ginger-Honey-Lemon Drink
I’ve got a scratchy throat and sniffles, and my sweet darling sister made me a hot cup of comforting deliciousness that had ginger, honey, and lemon in it. It was incredibly soothing and made me feel a whole lot better and happier.
Now if you want something even sexier, kick it up a notch — add some liquor! Ha! You’ve then got true blue toddies in your hands.
There are lots of versions of toddies, but here is a pretty easy-to-make hot ginger toddy.
This is a such a cozy orange-y clove-y drink. Here’s a recipe from Gin and Crumpets.
Hot Butter Rum
How can you go wrong with butter and rum? They’re great as an ice cream flavor, and as ingredients in bananas foster. And as a drink, they’re rich, decadent, and a little bit heady. Here’s how to make it.