The collection of spices used to make this mulled magic drink, give the cider deep, sweetly complex flavors that go beyond your traditional cinnamon apple cider, we all enjoy to ring in the colorful Autumn season. I love serving hot cider at our annual, end of the season Harvest Gathering, in my electric water bath canner, that keeps it hot, while easy to serve with its dispensable spout. Using a cheese cloth to hold the spices together makes it easy to fish out, if you are planning on transferring the brew to another container. Don't let this unique medley of spices intimidate you-it will be the star of the party! With your friends and family going "ooo that's good... what is in this??" and you can just smile and reply "magic."
- 6-8 whole cinnamon sticks
- 1 tablespoon whole cardamon seeds
- 1 tablespoon star anise
- 1 tablespoon whole peppercorns
- The peel of one orange
- 1 hand full of freshly foraged pine needles (omit if not confident in harvesting wild food)
Place all spices in a cheesecloth, wrap and tie a knot with the fabric to secure your homemade teabag. Add to apple juice/ cider and brew on medium-low heat for at least one hour. I personally like to do two 1 gallon jugs of apple cider to 1/2 a gallon of water, since drinking things too sweet is a rather big turn off to me.