Friday, February 13, 2015

Slow Cooker Rosemary Cranberry Mulled Cider

This recipe was one I made for New Year's Eve, so I know I am super late in posting this.  It's not even January; in fact we are already on February vacation after today!!  But trust me, it's better late then never with this cider.

First of all, your house will smell amazing when you make this.  It cooks for a few hours, so it's a good smell that lasts.  Second, it's in the slow cooker, so it's simple.  The most difficult part is putting the cloves in the orange.  And that's not so hard.

Third, and most importantly, is how delicious this cider is.  It's sweet but not too sweet like cider can be because of the addition of fresh cranberries, most of which burst after cooking for 4 hours.  It has a pleasant slight rosemary taste, but it's not overwhelming.  The cinnamon, cloves and orange spice it up beautifully.  And okay fine, you can add some spiced rum, because I did.  Hey, it was New Year's Eve.  I frankly added half a small bottle to a double batch, so it was weak enough to drink tons of it all night long - which is what I did.  And lots of other people as well.  In fact, all of it went, and that was a lot of cider.  Actually, my slow cooker was so full that a lot of it got spilled on my mom as we drove the very short way from my house to Ross', burning her and turning her sticky, but even she agreed that it was worth it once she got to drink it!

Happy February vacation  :)


8 cups apple cider
1/4 cup honey
1 orange
2 tablespoons whole cloves
1 cup fresh cranberries
2 5-inch cinnamon sticks
3 5-inch rosemary sprigs
additional rosemary and fresh cranberries for garnish


1) Pour apple cider into 2.5-quart or larger slow cooker.  Stir in honey.  It may remain clumpy but that's okay.  It will dissolve when the mixture heats up.

2) With a toothpick, poke holes in the orange, about 1/2 inch to 1 inch apart.  Carefully stick the cloves, pointy end down, into the holes.  Add the orange to the cider along with the cranberries, cinnamon sticks, and rosemary.  Push the rosemary down to help make sure it is submerged.

3) Cook on low until hot and the cranberries have started to burst, 3 - 4 hours, taking care not to let the cider boil.  Very carefully with a fork or masher, gently crush the remaining cranberries to pop them.  They might spurt, so be careful.

4) Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl (I skipped this part to be honest).  Add the strained cider back to the slow cooker.  Add the cinnamon sticks and orange back as well for a festive touch.  This is when you would stir in rum if you so choose. Serve immediately or keep the slow cooker on the warm setting to keep cider hot.  Garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs and fresh cranberries.

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