Updated: Nov 2
When I was a little girl, our family was invited to a friend's home for a celebration of autumn. After spending the afternoon raking up the leaves and then jumping into the giant piles of crispy colors, I remember walking into their home and smelling the most inviting smell of apples. I wanted to stay and never leave that magical place. The combination of the apple cider and the burning logs in their fireplace, was something I remember every time I put apple cider with cinnamon sticks on the back burner of my stove - a ritual I recreate during October and November, for the smell, the memory, and the opportunity to sip in fall.
So often I don't take the time to smell my food - to breathe in its pure simplicity. When I remember to close my eyes and smell my food, it takes me to a place of forgotten memories, and I find myself in deep gratitude. The experience shifts from one of gulping to a savoring memory, where suddenly I have all the time in the world, and I'm awakened to the joy of life.
Hot Apple Cider with muun chi Kvass - makes 4 servings
4 cups of fresh apple cider
3 big sticks for cinnamon sticks
3 dried cloves
4 whole black peppercorns
1-2 dried star anise
1/4 c. muun chi Kvass (classical or jazz)
1 navel orange and 1 crunchy apple of your liking, each cut into 1/4"slices
Put all the ingredients, minus the orange and apple, into a medium saucepan. Add the slices of apple and orange, reserving 1/2 of each for garnish. Bring the mixture to a boil and then lower the heat to a low simmer that I just keep on for hours just for the smell, but only needs 5 minutes.
Serve in mugs, with smaller sticks of cinnamon, a 1/4" slice of orange, and a 1/4" slice of apple. Happy autumn sipping!