Monday, October 31, 2011

Crock-Pot Cranberry Apple Cider and a Love Story

There is another reason as to why I love Halloween. Besides homemade candy and traditional food, I love today because it was two years ago I met the boyfriend.

After a few weeks of moving into off-campus housing for the first time, I became friends with a group of people whom I still adore today. It’s because of my friend GM I met my friend TJ. It was TJ who invited the lot of us to his fraternity’s Halloween party. And it was at that party I met him. Coincidence? I think not. 

Our first photo together, March 2010

The rest, my friends, is history.

When I met him, it was one of those moments that I said to myself, “Now, this is a person I need to get to know better!” I was wearing goth boots with my costume, but I knew we would be around the same height without them. It was a strange evening, because I ended up hanging out with the pair of them for the majority of it, laughing and talking the whole time. I left that party with his phone number, but that was just the beginning.

We saw each other again on campus the first week in November. I was drinking a cup of Joe in La Pat[isserie] on the first floor of the Johnson Center before my interview, and he stopped at my table to say hello. In my forward ways, I told him that it was such a treat to see him again and that I’d almost forgotten how cute he was (I know, I’m terrible). For some reason, we kept bumping into each other and, naturally, I started liking him even more. We hung out officially for his birthday on November 19th with TJ, three days after mine, and we started hanging out on a regular basis afterward. Even before we formally started dating in January, he came over for Leftovers Day (the day after Thanksgiving at our house) and played various games with my family. It also seemed, I don’t know, right to invite him and his father over for a Yule dinner (December 21st, also known as the Winter Solstice).

Our friendship knew no bounds. We went to the gym with mutual friends together. We went to the movies and stole kisses on the cheek. We went out to dinner. We made dinner together.  I think it had blossomed to the point that being in a true-blue relationship was the appropriate next step, and I cannot express how amazing it is to be in love (and with) one of my very best friends in the whole world.  

He went into this relationship knowing of my lifestyle, and he’s been just fabulous about it all. Whenever he is craving for the Old Country cuisine, he either finds a recipe that is naturally gluten free or modifies it to make it gluten free. And whenever I cook something up for this blog, he is always willing to be experimented on.

Two years ago today I met and became good friends with a few people, and I raise a glass to them. With all my love, Dear Friends, and Cheers to You All.
“Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence. True friendship is a plant of slow growth, and must undergo and withstand the shocks of adversity before it is entitled to the appellation.” (George Washington)
Crock-Pot Cranberry Apple Cider

64 oz Apple Cider
16 oz Cranberry Juice, unsweetened
3 oz Maple Syrup
2 Clementines, thinly sliced
Juice from 1/2 a Lemon (0.4 oz)
0.5 oz Fresh ginger, peeled and cut into chunks
1 tsp. Bourbon vanilla
1 stick or 1 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Allspice
1/2 tsp. Coriander
1/4 tsp. Nutmeg

Combine all the ingredients into a Crock-Pot and allow it to cook on low heat for eight hours.

Serves 8 – 12 people.

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