Twice as Tasty

Hot Buttered Rum

These cocktails are made for Montana winters

By Julie Laing
Hot buttered rum. Photo by Julie Laing

Few drinks warm you from head to toe like a hot beverage with a shot of alcohol. Whether your preferences run to a spiked coffee or cocoa, a toddy or mulled cider, the full alcoholic punch of spiced wine laced with vodka or a sweet buttery rum, these cocktails are made for Montana winters: après ski, at holiday gatherings or beside a roaring fire on a lazy frigid day.

My dad is a fan of a hot buttered rum variation that mixed loads of butter and sugar into a pint of ice cream, with a sprinkling of nutmeg as garnish. More ice cream float than spiced cocktail, it was always too sweet and rich for my tastes. My version still carries enough fat and sugar that you know you’re drinking a special treat, but it’s really all about the spice.

Although this recipe calls for ground spices, grinding whole ones yourself will give your beverages the best flavor. A spice mill or clean coffee grinder lets you quickly whiz the spices into a fine powder. Mix these into a batter that you stash in the fridge, and your winter warmer will be ready in the time it takes to boil water.

With all of the flavor in the batter mix, I prefer a white rum to a dark or spiced one. I’m mixing my latest batch of butter batter with the white rum handcrafted by Whistling Andy in Bigfork. It has a hint of blackstrap molasses that comes through the other flavors in the mug and nicely balances the spice blend and my homemade vanilla extract (visit TwiceAsTasty.com to get that recipe).

Hot Buttered Rum

Serves 16

For the butter batter:

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon ground allspice

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

pinch of sea salt

For one rum cocktail:

6 ounces hot water

2 tablespoons Butter Batter

2 ounces white rum

In a medium bowl or food processor, cream the butter and sugar until smooth. Blend or stir the ground spices, vanilla and salt into the butter mixture until thoroughly combined. Scoop all of the mixture that you don’t intend to use immediately into a container, cover and refrigerate; it keeps many months.

To serve, bring water to a boil, remove it from the heat and wait about a minute. Pour 6 ounces of hot water into each mug. With a small whisk, vigorously stir in the batter until it dissolves and becomes frothy. Stir in the rum and serve immediately.

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