Autumn is definitely here. People with air conditioning in their homes are switching it from cooling to heating, and we’re all going back into jumpers and turning to our cold-weather recipes. One of our favourite things about living in Surrey and Hampshire is all the gorgeous countryside. And there’s nothing better than coming in from an autumnal walk, cosying up in a warm house and enjoying a lovely hot drink.
Here are some of our favourite hot drink ideas.
Tea and other infusions
Tea’s great. If you love a cup of English Breakfast (or supermarket’s own brand!) with a splash of milk, go for it. Dee-lish.
But there are some interesting variations on the boiling-water-and-leaves approach you could consider too. Why not try your tea with lemon instead of milk? Make the tea quite weak, and float a slice of lemon in it. The result is hot, refreshing and satisfying, with a lower carbon footprint than a drink with cow’s milk.
If you’re already a drinker of herbal teas, you’ll have found your favourites and probably have a good stock. But if you’re caught between wanting less caffeine and finding herbal teas insipid, try adding fruit juice to your infusion (a 1:3 ratio works well). The juice will sweeten it and the herbs and fruit will complement each other. Apple juice is delicious in most infusions, but it’s worth experimenting to find your favourite combination.
Some of us say we can’t live without coffee. Some of us say it wakes us up and helps us concentrate. Some of us just love the smell, the taste, the culture. Whatever the reason we have coffee in our lives, there’s no reason not to spice it up a little, particularly if it’s a special occasion.
Ground cinnamon is an interesting addition to coffee. Add a scant half-teaspoon at the same time as the milk (plant milk or cow’s milk both work), give it a stir and enjoy. Be careful not to add too much as it can become gritty. If you’ve got cinnamon sticks handy, you could use one to stir your coffee instead of adding the ground spice.
Ginger somehow manages to be both cosy and refreshing – it’s also worth adding to your coffee to create a different flavour. It’s stronger than cinnamon so start with a small amount and add more to taste.
Lastly, if it’s a sweet treat you’re craving, you can always add a teaspoonful of hot chocolate powder and turn your coffee into a mocha.
Hot chocolate ideas
Did you know that chocolate was a drink before it was food? Without modern processes, cooks had to add a lot of sugar and spice – the National Trust has this recipe from 1652 to share! If you’d rather travel around the world than travel in time, why not try a Mexican hot chocolate? Put a small pan of milk on to heat, and add two tablespoonsful of cocoa, the same of sugar, a tiny amount of chilli powder and cinnamon and a few drops of vanilla essence. Whisk the ingredients together but don’t let the mixture boil. Just before you serve it, stir in 25g of good quality chocolate and let it melt.
Hot drinks recipes for autumn – heat your home in winter
When the hot summer is over and Farnham home-owners are looking for an efficient way to heat their homes, air conditioning from Acclimatise fits the bill. A system to cool the house in summer and warm it in winter means you can be comfortable all year round. Explore our site to find out more, or get in touch on 01483 570 120 – we’d love to hear from you.