Sunday, January 10, 2010

Hot Buttered Rhum

We have yet to try hot chocolate and rhum, but the sign in the photo above has forever changed the way I spell Mike's favorite liquor. And I really like that the skull is smiling over its crossbones. We figured it was almost as cold here as it gets in Prague, so we decided to have a warm drink for our Thursday night cocktail.

They know how to do cold in Prague. We had seen the picturesque vistas of the Czech Republic covered in snow, yet we were still somewhat shocked by the chill that greeted us in September. The highs on some days were in the low 50s, and we were both glad to have packed in layers.

We soon realized that the Czech eat as if they are storing up for a long, hard winter. Lots of beef, potatoes, dumplings sausage, onions, and gravy. Good Lord at the gravy. And goulash. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner: goulash and gravy, goulash and gravy, goulash and gravy. I once ordered a grilled chicken salad for lunch and received a side order of goulash and gravy, courtesy of the house. And believe it or not, scrambled eggs and goulash really isn't that bad.

Try as I might, I did not eat the first green thing during our entire stay.

But they make up for it in knowing how to drink. I suppose they have to do it to keep warm. Arguably the birthplace of absinthe and beer, these people take it to an art form. On the train from Prague to Munich, we stopped at a place called Pilsner. Sound familiar? And there is a centuries-standing rivalry between the Czech Republic and Germany as to who makes the better brew.

Let me share with you my most recent observance on warm alcoholic beverages: they go down smoothly. Too smoothly. Because you usually can't taste the liquor and are trying to fend off a chill, they creep up on you, and before you know it you're putting leftovers in the dishwasher and dirty dishes in the fridge. Not that I would know from personal experience or anything.

I also have to share that I was puttering around the kitchen while Mike worked beside me on this new drink of ours. And I noticed there was a tub of Country Crock on the counter. I looked at the tub. I looked at Mike. I looked back at the tub. And he was all, "What?" And I was all, "Hot Country-Crocked Rhum?" And then he let me bring out the real butter.

Roughly translated: You must be at least this tall or 18 years old to drink. Or really cold.

Hot Buttered Rhum
2 ounces rhum
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cinnamon stick
4-6 whole cloves
Boiling cider (to fill)
1 teaspoon butter
Garnish: spiral of lemon peel
  1. Stir the spices and rhum in a mug and fill with cider.
  2. Garnish with the lemon peel.
  3. Float the butter on top.



Made by Lena