Thursday, November 24, 2011

Hot Buttered Rum

The first time I had Hot Buttered Rum was at the ski resort I used to work at. It was wonderful, but they made it with an elaborate batter I couldn't hope to duplicate. The only thing the bartender would tell me was that it had vanilla ice cream in it.

Years later, on a chilly Thanksgiving morning, my dear friend Jenn offered me a hot buttered rum and I readily agreed. It was delicious, but was very basic. Just rum, hot water, butter, and a few sprinkles of spices. This is where I learned what a classic Hot Buttered Rum was. It was wonderful, and I still make them just like that, relying solely on the butter to give each sip it's richness.

But sometimes... Sometimes I crave the rich, creamy ski resort version. I still haven't figured out their batter recipe, although I am getting close. But, I did devise a halfway point between the two that I enjoy greatly.

Lee's Hot Buttered Rum

1 1/2 oz shot of dark rum (I prefer Myers's)
1/2 tbsp butter
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tbsp heavy whipping cream
drop or two of pure vanilla extract
sprinkle ground cinnamon and nutmeg
hot water to fill mug

Add rum and butter to mug, pour in a bit of hot water to heat the rum and melt the butter. Then stir in the other ingredients, topping the mug off with hot water. Stir and enjoy!

Note: be careful not to add too much cinnamon (sprinkle, not pour), as cinnamon becomes mucilaginous when cooked in liquid. No choking on cinnamon slime! It's not what the cool kids do.

I prefer Myers's Dark Rum, because it gives a richness that I find regular and spiced rums lack. But, really, just use what you have. Also, see that cinnamon stick? Notice how it isn't propped up artistically in the mug below? That's because what I was showing is that the 'ground cinnamon' in that old bottle is actually fresh cinnamon from a stick, that I ground up in my coffee-grinder-converted-to-spice-grinder-because-I-bought-a-cheap-grinder-that-ended-up-being-too-cheap-to-grind-coffee-well grinder. Because that's what I do. If you buy the cinnamon sticks on the funny little display of mexican spices in the vegetable section at the grocery, you'll spend a lot less and get a better product.

You are just lucky I took the time to take this picture, before I drank it. Lucky, I tell you!

PS. Ignore the Starbucks label on the mug. It's the only clear mug I own and I wanted to show you the color of the drink.

PPS. Oh, also, you can substitute a heaping spoonful of good vanilla ice cream in place of the whipping cream and vanilla, but be sure of two things. 1) It needs to be Good (expensive) ice cream that doesn't have any thickeners in it. No guar gum, no xanthan gum. Just milk, cream, eggs, vanilla, sugar. The thickeners are pretty gross when melted. 2) Get the kind without the vanilla bean flecks. Those are really just finely ground vanilla pods, not the tiny little seeds, and they don't like being mixed with hot water (see note about the cinnamon).

Next up, Chicken Liver Pate. (Shut up. It's good!)

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