Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! And for those who can, consider a donation, a visit or both to your community food bank. There are so many people this country who can barely afford to eat today, or any day.


Some holiday humor (though it's still far too close to reality), featuring Scotty-Told-Boo-Boo, from the one and only Eschaton:

Press Pass, 2003


Here's a little recipe for Thanksgiving (especially if it's cold) or any late fall or winter evening: Mulled Red Wine (hat tips go to Toni L. and James Earl H. and Donald A. for their delicious version).


2 bottles of merlot, red zinfandel or a similar wine ($5-9 range, not too cheap)
2/3rds cup of sugar or honey
zest from 1/2-1 orange
10 cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
1/2 cup of brandy or cognac
+ non-reactive pot, muddler/spoon, non-reactive bowl/mortar, stirring spoon, mugs/coffee cups/warming cups.

1. Pour the red wine in a non-reactive pot (non-stick, tempered glass/Pyrex, stainless steel, etc.), and heat over a low flame. Avoid very cheap wines, since they grow unpalatable when heated, and avoid aluminum, which will react with the wine.
2. With a vegetable peeler, zester or paring knife, zest the orange, making sure to avoid the white backing of the peel and rind, since there's less flavor and it can be bitter.
3. Muddle (or mash with a pestle or spoon) the zest/peel, releasing the oils, in a non-reactive (glass, porcelain) bowl or mortar.
4. Add the zest/peel to the wine.
5. Stir in the sugar, making sure it dissolves, then add the cloves and cinnamon sticks.
6. Add the 1/2 cup of brandy or cognac (the better the quality, the better the taste--and it adds real bite).
7. Heat until the wine is steaming, but try not to let it boil.
8. Set it aside, let it cool, and then ladle it into mugs, and enjoy!

(And remember, if you have more than a glass, designate a responsible driver, hire a cab or hit the public transportation!)

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