Saturday, November 26, 2011

Taste And Smell Christmas

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving and maybe you even braved the crowds and went black friday shopping yesterday. I just got a new car last week so no more shopping for me this year ;) 

I thought I would share a somewhat German Christmas tradition with you guys today. Now that Thanksgiving is over so many of my neighbors are already putting up their decorations and lights that I feel like this actually fits quite well. We will be spending Christmas with my family this year so we won't be doing much decorating around here at all. 
This little DIY is super easy, fairly cheap, yummy smelling aaaaand as a bonus you can include the kiddos if you'd like. 
Here is what you'll need:

A few oranges
Lots of cloves (buy them at a bulk store or a specialized spice shop to get them a lot cheaper)
Ribbon of your choice if you'd like to hang them up

And here is what you do...

Oh yeah you definitely need a cute little puppy to watch you while you do this ;)

You can make lots of cute patterns or even spell out your names, initials, whatever you can come up with. If you would like to hang them around the house just leave gaps for the ribbon or stick cloves through the ribbon to hold it in place even better.
Group a few oranges together so that you can smell them better, they do smell wonderful. 
Easy right?
I loved making these when I was a little girl and these ones were made by the hubby himself. I was a little shocked to be honest with you, he usually stays away from all of my "craft" projects. He doesn't think he's creative enough but then I come downstairs and he has spelled out our name in cloves on an orange ;) 

Now you may still be wondering why this post title says smell and TASTE. Well, no you're not supposed to eat these oranges, EVER! Yuck!
But now that you hopefully have some of the cloves left over how about we make some Kinderpunsch? 

Kinder what???

The literal translation would be Kids Punch and trust me it tastes yummy :)
Now I don't really use a specific recipe and I also don't really measure out the ingredients, instead I just keep tasting it while I make it.

I didn't take my own pictures so this is taken from google. My punch looks more orange due to the orange juice.

Here is what you will need if you're making a lot like I did for Thanksgiving...

1/4 - 1/2 gallon of berry fruit tea
1 Orange cut into slices
1 Lemon cut into slices (try to buy organic for both if you can since they will be floating in your punch)
1 Jug of Apple Juice (half gallon)
1 Jug of Orange Juice (half gallon)
Cranberry Juice or Cran-Apple (whichever you prefer)
2-3 Sticks of Cinnamon
Brown Sugar

Heat the tea water in a big stock pot, add 2-3 tea bags and let sit for 5-10 minutes. Remove tea bags. Now add in your juices. I didn't use all of the juice, it just depends on how much you want to make. I try to add a large amount of apple juice a little less of the orange juice and the least amount of the cranberry. 
Put cloves into a loose tea infuser so they don't float around in your punch. If you don't have one try to find something else to contain them in like a sieve or hand strainer. Throw the cinnamon sticks, orange and lemon slices directly into the pot. Use brown sugar to sweeten to taste. Heat everything to almost boiling. I wouldn't let it simmer but it won't hurt to let all the ingredients sit in the pot for a while. 
Now enjoy the taste of the holidays :) 

If you've ever been to a christmas market in Germany you may have had what they call "hot wine". It is very similar to this except for the alcohol. I actually have always preferred the Kinderpunsch over the adult version. 

Please let me know if you try this recipe and if you and/or your kids liked it. 

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