Maple Caramel Corn & Hot Spiced (and Spiked!) Cider

caramel corn and spiced cider I just got back from an amazing week of skiing at Whistler-Blackcomb –  didn’t you miss me?  I knew you would, so here is a ski-inspired recipe that will transport you from your desks to slope-side apres ski and give you a little TASTE of what my vaca was all about.  First for the obligatory scenery pic… BEAUTIFUL right?!

Whistler
Hoping to pro-long my vacation and wishing I was back on the slopes I cooked up my go-to snack for apres ski.   Because skiing is great, but the sweetest part is a solid apres ski after a day on snow.  You need a delicious snack to munch on and a warm and boozy drink to relax your tired muscles and get the winter chill out of your bones.  The perfect solution? Popcorn and spiced cider!

popcorn kernals pop corn caramel bake the caramel corn But since this was a special trip I thought I would jazz things up a bit and make maple flavored caramel corn.  This recipe is majorly delicious.  Sweet, Salty, Crunchy – homemade caramel corn is where it’s at!  I even enhanced the recipe by using local Vermont maple syrup.  This turned out to be a great move. Everyone loves good maple syrup, but on popcorn? YUM!
apple cider rum For my apres beverage, the IDEAL drink for when you’re fresh off the slopes is hot spiced cider with dark rum.  The key to making a successful hot spiced cider is the quality of the ingredients.  Before I left, I grabbed some fresh local apple cider from the Race Farms stand and bought some high quality dark rum.   I then heated the cider on a low heat with some cinnamon sticks and star anise.  The low heat allows the spices to seep into the cider and give it an amazing sweet and spicy taste.  Once the cider is steaming, add a shot of rum and drink up!  Your muscles will immediately relax and your whole body will warm up.
hot apple cider

Close your eyes and immerse yourself in the decadence of a great ski vacation: munching on sweet, crunchy, still-warm-from-the-oven maple caramel corn with a mug-full of spicy hot cider sweetened with rum.  You’ll be relaxed and smiling in no time!

caramel corn

This maple caramel corn and hot spiced cider is a real treat for non-skiers too!  Haven’t you ever hear of apres shopping, apres spin class, apres dentist appointment, apres work conference?  I think we’re on to something!  As for me, I will be suffering through mountains of e-mails after a week off, adjusting to the time change,  and wishing I was still out west – at least I won’t be hungry!
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caramel corn

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