Friday, November 19, 2010

The Hot Toddy Virgin

by Cassondra Murray

If it's not too personal a question....

Have you ever had a hot toddy?

Until last weekend I was a hot toddy virgin.

Don't get too cozy thinking of me that way. For my December blog I'm planning Confessions of a Dish Whore. So depending on the subject, it can go either way with me. You just never know.

It started last Friday when I began feeling kind of puny. I've been puny a lot this fall. To be honest, I've been off my game for about three weeks, but I've been resisting getting sick.

I've been too busy to get sick, and dangit, I just don't have time. So I mentioned to a friend in an email that I was feeling rotten and thinking of taking some meds and going to bed. Now I'll tell you that I don't like taking any kind of chemical, but when it comes to sinus drainage (ew! ) and coughing, my motto is Better Living Through Pharmaceuticals. I'll do anything to be able to sleep, and thus to keep going.

So I mentioned this to my friend and she said, "Ohhhhh....you need a hot bath and a nice hot toddy and you'll sleep like a baby!"

This was a new idea for me because although I've heard of hot toddies all my life, I'd never had one or made one. I've been a bartender. I can mix a mean Irish Coffee, and I know how to pour a proper Cognac. But I'm not a liquor drinker. I like wine, but liquor? WAY too strong for these tastebuds.

Hot Toddy.

It just sounds hoity toity, don't you think? Like something I remember reading about for the first time in The Great Gatsby, which is plenty enough reason to dislike it without going one bit further. Makes me think of something a little eccentric. Perhaps a term a great-great aunt would use as an excuse to get tipsy while pretending she really doesn't drink.

You know the eccentric aunt. The one with 39 cats. All in the house. The one with giant flower-shaped clip-on pearl earrings and a tuft of off-blue, teased hair, who gossips with her cronies once a week under the dryers at the Curl Up & Dye, and keeps all her money in the mattress and wears rose water and collects twist ties and bits of string, and is secretly having a torrid affair with the minister from the Fourth Presbyterian church across town. The one who titters, "Here you go, dearie. Have a nice little hot toddy," then innocently scoops the rat poison back underneath the counter when she thinks you're not looking.

I did not want to be that aunt.

So last weekend I was desperate. Despite my misgivings, I googled "hot toddy."

Apparantly I'm the only one opposed to the sound of hot toddy, because I found about a gazillion recipes. Pages of them. Most of them looked something like this.

1 tbsp honey
3/4 glass
tea
2 shots brandy

1 slice
lemon

Brew tea and fill a tall glass 3/4 full. Mix in honey. Mix in brandy shots. Add lemon slice and enjoy.

Some of the recipes used chai. Some were creamy and mixed in a blender.

The one ingredient common to all the recipes was.....liquor. Not the low-alcohol wine I'm used to. Liquor. Bourbon or Scotch or brandy or spiced rum.

I went digging through the cabinets. The only liquor I had was some disgusting cheap brandy I'd bought for something long ago, used half a cup of, and stuck back to rot. And I had a small bottle of Wild Turkey American Honey Liqueur. The bottle had never even been opened.

I poured in one shot of the 70-proof liqueur. Tea did not sound like a good idea late at night, so I filled the cup with hot water, put in a cinnamon stick, a few whole cloves, a squeeze of lemon, and a spoon of raw sugar.

It still took a little getting used to for this wine girl, but can I just say I was....well....pleased....quite happy in fact..... with this form of medicine? Oh, yeah. SO much better than Nyquil.

My friend was right. I slept like a baby. And I woke up the next day with nary a sign of a drug hangover.

My husband grew up in a house where they made their own cough medicine out of cheap whiskey, honey and lemon juice. He said a spoon of it worked as well as any cough syrup he's ever used. I remember my grandfather taking a spoonful of whiskey when he had a sore throat, but I also remember the rest of the family raising eyebrows, and then frowning at him, as though God did not smile upon those who got their medicine from the liquor store--or in our Buckle-of-the-Bible-Belt dry county, the bootlegger.

My family got its alcohol from the local drugstore. Complete with God's stamp of approval.

I suppose I will have to fall back on Nyquil or Theraflu at some point, but for the moment, I'm quite content.

So content that I stopped at the store on the way home tonight and picked up another bottle of Wild Turkey American Honey liqueur. If I'm going to be sick, I figure I might as well enjoy the heck out of it.

The kettle is on the stove. I think it's about time for another dose.

Have you ever had a hot toddy?

Do you drink them when you're feeling under the weather, or do you like them for a hot drink on a cold winter night?


A treat on a holiday weekend maybe?

Does anyone you know drink hot liquor drinks? Irish coffee, perhaps?


Did your family make co
ugh syrup themselves?

Or did your family do what mine did, and buy their alcohol from the drugstore?



Any hot toddy recipes out there?

61 comments:

PinkPeony said...

Hey Cassondra...
Having been dosed with my share of Chinese medicinal teas that tasted like drain cleaner mixed with a moldy demi-glace, I've stayed clear of hot toddies. I will take Theraflu if I've got a cold.
Does Irish coffee count?

Sheree said...

Never had a hot toddy and probably won't - unless I can use Godiva chocolate liqueur?

Sheree said...

For a "cold" cold (as opposed to a "warm" cold which is the type I get in CA nowadays), my mother's recipe involves fresh ginger, brown sugar, and a large pot of water. Worked wonders when I was a kid in NY, but not for the colds I get now.

Helen said...

Well done Jen have fun with him he has had his fill of Tim Tams LOL

Cassondra

Great post and no I have never had a hot toddy but I gotta say they do sound nice I might try one next time I don't feel well and I do have some whiskey in the cupboard because if I have a drink here and there it is a scotch and coke.
None of our family ever made their own medicine as far as I know and I do enjoy an irish coffee when I am out. As far as buying alcohol we usually by it from a bottle shop most pubs and clubs have them even supermarkets have them these days.

I do hope you are feeling better soon

Have Fun
Helen

Jane said...

Hi Cassondra,
I've never had a hot toddy. I would like to sample an Irish coffee and mulled wine. We've never made our own cough syrups. We always went to the store for the Vicks 44 and NyQuil.

Kim in Hawaii said...

Aloha, Cassondra! You're posts always make me laugh ... and looking forward to which way December's goes!

My English grandmother had one remedy for everything - brandy. Headache? Brandy. Cough? Brandy. Teething? Brandy. She didn't think 90 proof would hurt the baby.

It's just a little too hot here in Hawaii for a hot drink ... so the next time the VOG (volcanic ash) descends upon us and creates sinus infections, I'll just have a Margarita in your honor.

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I don't have a recipe but my grandmother dosed me up enough times when I was a kid that I remember the lemon part. And honey, I don't know what liquor she used but my dad was a bourbon drinker at the time so I assume that was in there somewhere. I have also seen my grandmother put liquor on her finger and rub it on a baby's gums to help with teething.
My boyfriend likes the Wild Turkey with Honey, I got him some about 2 years ago, he is still working on it but swears it is way better than Nyquil...LOL


I like Irish Coffee and I have always wanted to try a spiced rum but never have. If I drink it is usually a clear alchohol. Vodka, gin, tequila, rum. I do like Bailey's and Kaluha and once upon a time almost always had some kind of after dinner liqueur or cordial on hand.

Deb Marlowe said...

Your recipe sounds good, Cassondra! I'll bet it was better than Nyquil!

Hope you are feeling better soon!

Anna Sugden said...

Lemsip is a big cold remedy over here - kind of like Theraflu in the US - hot lemon-flavoured drink which contains the meds. We are big on hot drinks to soothe the symptoms of a cold! Adding a tot of whiskey or brandy or even rum certainly helps as does a spoon of honey!

My fave hot toddy for when I feel below par is a hot milk drink with a shot of brandy or bourbon or rum and a spoon of honey.

Kirsten said...

Hi Cassondra! You've inspired me to go out and purchase some serious liquor so I can give this a try -- and I'm not even sick!

My mother is from Latvia, and us Eastern Europeans cure EVERYTHING with liquor. I remember when my guinea pig was sick, my mom gave it a shot of something out of the liquor cabinet and it totally cured him! LOL. She always advises a shot of something when the kids and I aren't feeling well. I don't usually do it, but I think perhaps I should start!

Kirsten said...

Hey NOTE FOR JANE -- if you see this -- can you email me again with your addy? I seem to have lost it...

Christie Kelley said...

Cassondra, I've never had a hot toddy either. Although, I'm open to trying them. I think I'd have to use the spiced rum, though. I'm not much for brandy or whiskey.

Cough syrup has always been bought in my house. In fact, my husband took a nip of Nyquil before bed last night because he's been sick for a week.

I hope you feel better!

flchen1 said...

I've never had a hot toddy, although I've heard of them. And like PinkPeony, I've been dosed with Chinese medicinal stuff before--eeeeeek!

Something warm and a little sweet sounds pretty yummy :)

Donna MacMeans said...

Cassondra - I'm a believer in the medicinal power of booze. When my daughter was a baby and had a nasty phlymy cold, the pediatrician suggested I fill a bottle with warm water (not hot!), add sugar for sweetness, add a tablespoon of whiskey. He said the whiskey would help with the phlyem and help her sleep. It worked. So i figure what's good for the baby works for the adult.

The heat from the hot toddy feels good on the throat, but so does an ice-cold drink - so I can go either way on that. The alcohol is the key.

Speaking of hot drinks - when we were in Cancun, my husband ordered a Mayan coffee. I'll have to look for a recipe for that. It's mostly alcohol that's lit with a match, then poured from cup to cup like a stream of fire. Very cool to watch. I'll talk more about it on the Nov. 23rd blog.

Cybercliper said...

Coming from the Appalachian mountains I've definitely had my share of Hot Toddies. I don't care for bourbon so they're a kinda "hold your nose and drink" thing for me. My Dad made them in little glasses with bourbon, rock candy, honey, lemon, and very hot water - my Dad would have thought 'tea' was a carpenters' square. They usually were just a little past a shot size.

And oh yeah, had my share of homemade medicine. You haven't lived until you had Ginger tea - designed to break fevers and run poisons out of your system. Like drinking liquid fire - if you can survive the initial downing, then you were wrapped in sheets and placed near the stove or fire and made to sit there until buckets of sweat started to run clear - that was a sign the infection was out of your system.

I could give you recipes for just about anything - my brother and I still laugh and wonder how we ever survived our childhood. I can mention kerosene today and he'll still turn ghost white...

Cassondra said...

Hello all.

I'm up, though I did not want to be up. But had work to do!

pink, you got the rooster!

*sigh* Got the service unavailable error and the blog ate my comment. This does not bode well for the day. Hmmmm....Perhaps I need a morning hot toddy.

Cassondra said...

Pink, I think Irish Coffee is not exactly a hot toddy. But....who's to say it wouldn't have the same effect?

And I'll tell you, this tastes a LOT better than Theraflu. Blech.

Cassondra said...

Sheree said:

Never had a hot toddy and probably won't - unless I can use Godiva chocolate liqueur?

I don't see why you couldn't use any liqueur you'd like, although I don't think the Godiva is very high in alcohol, and I think the high alcohol content is part of the magic because the warm alcohol makes you sleepy.

Cassondra said...

Sheree said:

For a "cold" cold (as opposed to a "warm" cold which is the type I get in CA nowadays), my mother's recipe involves fresh ginger, brown sugar, and a large pot of water. Worked wonders when I was a kid in NY, but not for the colds I get now.

Sheree, will you tell me the difference in the colds you get? I think mine are different now too, but I can't put my finger on what, exactly...and haven't figured out why. What do you mean by a "warm" cold?

Cassondra said...

Helen said:

None of our family ever made their own medicine as far as I know and I do enjoy an irish coffee when I am out. As far as buying alcohol we usually by it from a bottle shop most pubs and clubs have them even supermarkets have them these days.

Irish coffee is fantastic isn't it?

I can't drink any caffeine in the afternoons though, or I'll be up all night. We haven't gotten free of the old liquor laws that won't allow alcohol sales on Sunday, nor supermarkets to sell alcohol--not in Kentucky anyhow. In some other states this is not so.

Thanks for the good wishes. Sleep works wonders it seems. I feel better this morning. Throat is still sore though.

Cassondra said...

Jane said:

I've never had a hot toddy. I would like to sample an Irish coffee and mulled wine. We've never made our own cough syrups. We always went to the store for the Vicks 44 and NyQuil.

Wow! All these hot toddy virgins! I thought I was probably the only one.

Irish Coffee is just fantastic. Mulled wine is not bad, but I don't particularly love it. Mulled apple cider? Now that's fantastic too. I wonder if the whiskey and sugar homemade medicine is a southern thing?

Cassondra said...

Kim in Hawaii said:

My English grandmother had one remedy for everything - brandy. Headache? Brandy. Cough? Brandy. Teething? Brandy. She didn't think 90 proof would hurt the baby.

A lot of southern families used whiskey, but I think that's because it was more easily available than brandy. Same idea. And yaknow...it didn't seem to keep anybody from graduating, best I can tell.

My liqueur is actually a lightweight. It's only 70 proof. So I'm wondering if it's less effective because of that. Man...90 proof would be as hard to swallow--for me--as Nyquil or Theraflu, which is just plain nasty!

JWZ1978 said...

I like to do a hot toddy with ginger ale, whiskey or ginger brandy, and just a drop of honey...soothing and delicious :)

Louisa Cornell said...

Hey, Pink ! Do NOT under any circumstances let the GR talk you into giving HIM a hot toddy! It will not be pretty!

You crack me up, Cassondra! Hope you get to feeling better! I'm a bit stubborn when it comes to getting sick as well I become Cleopatra - Queen of de'Nile until I just can't get up in the morning. Hate being sick!

Never had a hot toddy. Never had a drop of liquor actually in all my 52 years. Saving it for the day I sell a book. Then I am getting snockered! Maybe I'll do it at RWA Nationals one year so everyone can watch. LOL

I have, however, had two dogs (one still with me) whom I have treated with hot toddies from time to time. Both (mother and daughter) began to suffer from really bad bronchitis attacks as they got older. (I lost the Mama dog, Waya, this year at the age of 18.) One of my students recommended giving the old lady a shot of whiskey one year to help with her coughing at night. It worked! And she loved it! Later my vet recommended Nyquil and every year from late October through March Waya went to bed with a medicine cup of Nyquil. She waited for it and drank it from the cup like it was doggie candy! My brothers called her the "Old Lush" and said she faked the cough longer and longer each year to keep getting her shot of Nyquil! She only liked the cherry flavor, never the green. Her daughter Grumpy is 15 and has started coughing after out latest cold snap. She guzzles the Nyquil just like her Mom did.

My hot drink of choice when I feel bad is piping hot Earl Gray, sometimes with a bit of honey in it. Honey has great healing powers.

One family remedy we do have is a salve made from all sorts of natural ingredients. It was my grandmother's recipe first and now my Mom makes it. It looks awful! Green, sort of greasy and it smells terrible BUT it heals cuts in a day or so, it helps with chest congestion instantly, it helps with arthritis pain or achy muscles. I use it on myself and the dogs. We call it the Green Stuff.

Cassondra said...

aka Dianna said:

I don't have a recipe but my grandmother dosed me up enough times when I was a kid that I remember the lemon part. And honey, I don't know what liquor she used but my dad was a bourbon drinker at the time so I assume that was in there somewhere.

AHA! The first Bandit Buddy to NOT be a hot toddy virgin! Yes, I'm guessing it was bourbon. My sense of it was that they used whatever they had on hand.


I have also seen my grandmother put liquor on her finger and rub it on a baby's gums to help with teething.

Oh....did it work?????

My boyfriend likes the Wild Turkey with Honey, I got him some about 2 years ago, he is still working on it but swears it is way better than Nyquil...LOL

Ha! A man after my own heart.

Actually when I stopped at the store last night (Didn't mean to sound like a lush in the blog--okay, maybe I did, but I'm not one realy--that first bottle was actually really small) the girl pouring for a bourbon tasting was an old friend of mine who works for a liquor distributor. She told me that the company sells more of the Wild Turkey Honey liqueur for Hot Toddies and medicine than they do for just drinking. I think because it's so smooth.

Cassondra said...

Deb Marlowe said:

Your recipe sounds good, Cassondra! I'll bet it was better than Nyquil!


It IS better than Nyquil. I recommend it. *grin*

Cassondra said...

Anna Sugden said:

We are big on hot drinks to soothe the symptoms of a cold! Adding a tot of whiskey or brandy or even rum certainly helps as does a spoon of honey!

AH....I'm betting the hot toddy is English in origin then. And maybe it never quite came of age here in the states, or at least it's been lost in the area where I live. Prohibition maybe ruined it. And that combination of honey and alcohol does seem to have a little magic to it doesn't it?

My fave hot toddy for when I feel below par is a hot milk drink with a shot of brandy or bourbon or rum and a spoon of honey.

Oh, I never thought of milk! You know, I have so little patience for heating up milk. It seems to take forever or else I'll burn it. I'm not a milk lover, but I wonder if I'd like it with the shot in it? Must try it and see.

How hot do you make your milk? Just barely warm? I've been making the water for the hot toddies near-to-boiling.

Cassondra said...

Kirsten said:

My mother is from Latvia, and us Eastern Europeans cure EVERYTHING with liquor. I remember when my guinea pig was sick, my mom gave it a shot of something out of the liquor cabinet and it totally cured him!

No way! How much did she give him? A little out of a medicine dropper? Liquor has been used as medicine for a long time by a lot of people it seems.

She always advises a shot of something when the kids and I aren't feeling well. I don't usually do it, but I think perhaps I should start!

Well, I think it's not gonna keep 'em out of college or anything...

Just sayin.

Cassondra said...

Christie Kelley said:

Cassondra, I've never had a hot toddy either. Although, I'm open to trying them. I think I'd have to use the spiced rum, though. I'm not much for brandy or whiskey.

Well, I'm not either. I don't know because I haven't tried it, but the picture at the top of the blog is one made with Cruzan. So apparantly it's the thing to do!

Cough syrup has always been bought in my house. In fact, my husband took a nip of Nyquil before bed last night because he's been sick for a week.

We do this too--we tend to keep the medicine cabinet stocked because if you start coming down with cold or flu at night, the last thing you want to have to do is run out and find a Walgreens.

Cassondra said...

flchen1 said:

I've never had a hot toddy, although I've heard of them. And like PinkPeony, I've been dosed with Chinese medicinal stuff before--eeeeeek!

Something warm and a little sweet sounds pretty yummy :)


It is actually pretty yummy. I still have to get used to the high-alcohol punch, even though mine's kind of a wussy hot toddy. And I haven't had the Chinese medicines (but I have to wonder if they worked and I'm betting they did?) but I'm betting my hot toddies taste better than those medicines.

Cassondra said...

Donna said:

Cassondra - I'm a believer in the medicinal power of booze. When my daughter was a baby and had a nasty phlymy cold, the pediatrician suggested I fill a bottle with warm water (not hot!), add sugar for sweetness, add a tablespoon of whiskey. He said the whiskey would help with the phlyem and help her sleep. It worked. So i figure what's good for the baby works for the adult.

Well, there you have it! Straight from the pediatrician's mouth!

The heat from the hot toddy feels good on the throat, but so does an ice-cold drink - so I can go either way on that. The alcohol is the key.

You know, the cold drinks don't feel good on my throat when it's sore. Only warm. And I guess there's the whole--it's winter and warm is more comforting at this point. But yes, I think you're right. Alcohol is the key.

Speaking of hot drinks - when we were in Cancun, my husband ordered a Mayan coffee. I'll have to look for a recipe for that. It's mostly alcohol that's lit with a match, then poured from cup to cup like a stream of fire. Very cool to watch. I'll talk more about it on the Nov. 23rd blog.

OH, I'd love to see that. I can flame drinks (you have to be really careful with it--the rim of the cups gets hotter than you'd think and you'll burn your lips--gotta give it a moment to cool down after you stop flaming), but I've never had a recipe where you POURED the flaming alcohol. I bet it was beautiful!

You need really high-proof alcohol, though. NOT Bacardi 151 though. It's actually explosive.

Cassondra said...

Cybercliper said:

You haven't lived until you had Ginger tea - designed to break fevers and run poisons out of your system. Like drinking liquid fire - if you can survive the initial downing, then you were wrapped in sheets and placed near the stove or fire and made to sit there until buckets of sweat started to run clear - that was a sign the infection was out of your system.

Oh, my lord. I've heard of this, but thankful my family did not follow this sweating practice. However, I'd love to know how the ginger tea is made. I make hot ginger tea (from ginger root) for my husband to settle his stomach, but apparantly I don't make it the way your folks did. Mine's actually good. Maybe a mild variety as compared to yours. If you know how it's made, I'd love it if you'd share.

I could give you recipes for just about anything - my brother and I still laugh and wonder how we ever survived our childhood. I can mention kerosene today and he'll still turn ghost white...

Okay, now kerosene--that was not in the medicine cabinet at our house except for chiggers. When we'd go blackberry picking, we'd smear a kerosene-damp rag around our ankles and wrists, and never got a chigger. I've heard of people having to drink it though, and I'm surprised you lived if you had to do that.

What part of the Appalachians?

Cassondra said...

JWZ1978 said:

I like to do a hot toddy with ginger ale, whiskey or ginger brandy, and just a drop of honey...soothing and delicious :)

Ohhh...do you warm up the gingerale?

Cassondra said...

Louisa said:

Never had a hot toddy. Never had a drop of liquor actually in all my 52 years. Saving it for the day I sell a book. Then I am getting snockered! Maybe I'll do it at RWA Nationals one year so everyone can watch. LOL

OHHHH, Louisa! If you've never had liquor, it's not going to take you long to get schnockered! About half a drink and you'll be under the table, so I doubt we'll have you to entertain us for long! Perhaps you should practice up a bit....just for the sake of having a longer party! (Or as an alternative, the Bandits could bribe the bartender to mix your drinks reeeeeeaaaaaaly weak. *grin*

Anna Sugden said...

Cassondra - that's what microwaves are for! I heat my milk in the microwave and not totally boiling, but not lukewarm either.

Cassondra said...

Louisa said:

One family remedy we do have is a salve made from all sorts of natural ingredients. It was my grandmother's recipe first and now my Mom makes it. It looks awful! Green, sort of greasy and it smells terrible BUT it heals cuts in a day or so, it helps with chest congestion instantly, it helps with arthritis pain or achy muscles. I use it on myself and the dogs. We call it the Green Stuff.

Oh, I love this idea of the green stuff! One day, maybe you can show it to me and tell me about it!

Cassondra said...

Anna Sugden said:

Cassondra - that's what microwaves are for! I heat my milk in the microwave and not totally boiling, but not lukewarm either.

Well, I will have to try it. I've warmed milk in the microwave for recipes, but I got it fairly hot once and it foamed over and kind of exploded. So I went back to the stovetop method when I needed it hot, and that's SLOW. I have a new microwave now though, so maybe....

Suzanne Ferrell said...

Cassondra, I can't believe you've never had a hot toddy! I have to confess to making a milder form for the kids when they had stuffy noses and wouldn't sleep...and thereby making me miserable!

I tend to get bronchitis, (which is so much better than the five bouts of pneumonia I've had throughout my nursing career!). The coughing is the worst part.

My new favorite med?

Tussionex liquid. OMG!! a healthy spoonful and I sleep like a baby, hardly cough and recover wayyyyyyyyyyyy quicker!!

Nancy said...

PinkPeony, congrats on the bird!

Cassondra, I have never had a hot toddy. I've read about them in novels--my first exposure may have come courtesy of Georgette Heyer--but never tasted one. I've been curious, but we usually don't have liquor on hand, either.

My grandfather was known to take a "medicinal" little glass of whiskey on rare occasions, but my mom wouldn't touch it. As far as I know, my dad didn't either.

We got our liquor at the pharmacy, never made our own cough medicine.

Honey liqueur, eh? Mead is made from honey, and the dh hated it when he tried it. This sounds better.

catslady said...

I've been drinking the tea and honey without the liquor but it sounds like a good idea. I caught a bug about a month ago and the darn cough is still with me. I don't care for the nightime medicines - makes me feel worse in the mornings so maybe I should give the toddy a try lol. (I'm usually a wine girl). And from childhood the one thing I remember is my parents sticking vicks vaporub up my nose in great quantities and to this day I won't get near the stuff lol.

Cassondra said...

Suz said:

Cassondra, I can't believe you've never had a hot toddy! I have to confess to making a milder form for the kids when they had stuffy noses and wouldn't sleep...and thereby making me miserable!


It's true.

I was a hot toddy virgin until last week.

Cassondra said...

Nancy said:

Honey liqueur, eh? Mead is made from honey, and the dh hated it when he tried it. This sounds better.

Well, I love mead, but it's more of a wine, and tends to be lower in alcohol.

This is very good though, as medicine goes.....The honey liqueur is much smoother than the straight liquor would be.

Cassondra said...

catslady said:

I've been drinking the tea and honey without the liquor but it sounds like a good idea. I caught a bug about a month ago and the darn cough is still with me. I don't care for the nightime medicines - makes me feel worse in the mornings so maybe I should give the toddy a try lol. (I'm usually a wine girl). And from childhood the one thing I remember is my parents sticking vicks vaporub up my nose in great quantities and to this day I won't get near the stuff lol.

I do smear vicks vaporub on my chest if I have a cough that is lung-based. Right now it's just sinus drainage (ew) and a sore throat. I think the hot toddy might help your cough.

Nancy said...

Cassondra, sinus grot is a horrible nuisance. It's probably aggravating your sore throat, too.

I hadn't thought of mead as being more like wine. I'd tended to class it with beer, not knowing much about it.

Beth said...

Hey, Cassondra! I've never had a hot toddy but I'd love to try one. I'm all for hot drinks - no matter how I'm feeling or what the weather *g*

Hope you're feeling less puny :-)

Pat Cochran said...

Congratulations on snagging the
GR to Pink Peony!

I'm a hot toddy girl from my child-
hood! My grandmother made them for
us on hearing the first cough. Of
course, the amount of liquor was
keyed to our various ages, but not
given to the younger children. For
them, she made warm lemonade with
honey.For the older children it
was hot lemonade or tea with honey
and a few drops of the liquor. It
certainly did help especially if
congestion was part of the illness.

Pat Cochran

Pissenlit said...

I've never had a hot toddy but I would like to try one at some point! Hot liqueur drinks sound tasty!

My family used to buy cough syrup from the drugstore when my brother and I were kids but that didn't last very long when my mum realised that every time I had cough syrup, I'd have one of those panicking dreams that continued for a few minutes after she physically woke me up...that and sleepwalking happened sometimes. Oh and there was that one time I woke up due to being freezing cold. Turns out I'd fallen out of bed and rolled all the way across the room without noticing.

Cough syrup was not my friend. :)

Nancy said...

Pissenlit, we used to get prescription cough syrup with codeine in it when we were really congested. I always had weird, freaky dreams when I took that stuff.

Pissenlit said...

Nancy, wow, I didn't ever get the fancy shmancy codeine stuff. The regular over-the-counter ones were all it took to do me in. :)

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Cassondra said...
I have also seen my grandmother put liquor on her finger and rub it on a baby's gums to help with teething.

Oh....did it work?????

I don't know if it made their gums quit hurting but they didn't really care anymore.........SNORK

Nancy said...

Pissenlit, we didn't get the serious stuff often. I was kinda glad, considering what it did to me.

Nancy said...

Dianna, I don't know if that helps with teething, but I bet it makes the baby very happy. . . .

Tracey Devlyn said...

Like you, I'm not a fan of strong liquor. But your hot toddy sounds do-able! :) One of these days I'll have to give it a try. Thanks for the recipe!

Cassondra said...

Hello again everybody.

I'm so sorry I was AWOL. Had a bit of a household emergency which took my entire afternoon and evening.

Cassondra said...

Beth said:

I've never had a hot toddy but I'd love to try one. I'm all for hot drinks - no matter how I'm feeling or what the weather *g*

I never really spent much time with hot alcoholic drinks until this one. But I have to say it's won me over. I did take a dose of Nyquil last night in the middle of the night--after the hot toddy had worn off. Kept me breathing easily until morning, but that stuff makes me feel rotten.

Cassondra said...

Nancy said;

I hadn't thought of mead as being more like wine. I'd tended to class it with beer, not knowing much about it.

Well...I think it's sort of in a class by itself, but it's a bit more like wine than beer in its process. Plus, it's bottled in wine-like bottles usually, which tends to make me think of it as wine. Most people speak of it as "wine made from honey"--and that is pretty much what it is, for the most part. However, none of this stuff is official or anything. I'm not sure one could place it clearly in either category.

Cassondra said...

Pat Cochran said:

hot toddy girl from my child-
hood! My grandmother made them for
us on hearing the first cough. Of
course, the amount of liquor was
keyed to our various ages, but not
given to the younger children. For
them, she made warm lemonade with
honey.For the older children it
was hot lemonade or tea with honey
and a few drops of the liquor. It
certainly did help especially if
congestion was part of the illness.


YAY!!! Another hot toddy girl!

Interesting that your folks had an age at which they knew it was okay to start including a tad bit of liquor in the mix. I'm not a parent and would not know this, although I'm aware that nowadays the modern thinking will scare a parent to death about such things. Pays to have some common sense I'd guess.

Cassondra said...

Pissenlit said:

My family used to buy cough syrup from the drugstore when my brother and I were kids but that didn't last very long when my mum realised that every time I had cough syrup, I'd have one of those panicking dreams that continued for a few minutes after she physically woke me up...that and sleepwalking happened sometimes. Oh and there was that one time I woke up due to being freezing cold. Turns out I'd fallen out of bed and rolled all the way across the room without noticing.

Oh, now, see??? This right here is why I hate taking any kind of chemical. You just don't know what it's going to do to any particular individual until you try it, and the results are often NOT fun.

You should definitely try hot toddies if this is the result of the drugs. I'm glad you were not hurt!

Cassondra said...

Nancy said:

... we used to get prescription cough syrup with codeine in it when we were really congested. I always had weird, freaky dreams when I took that stuff.

Yeah, codeine does strange things to me too, but it's some major good stuff when you can't quit coughing.

Cassondra said...

Tracey Devlyn said:

Like you, I'm not a fan of strong liquor. But your hot toddy sounds do-able! :) One of these days I'll have to give it a try. Thanks for the recipe!

You should definitely try it! And you ought to google hot toddy the way I did. There are so many recipes. Easy to find one that appeals to you by reading through just a few.

Sheree said...

Cassondra, I think it's a Chinese chi designation. Since ginger is warming, it's good for "cold" ailments like the colds I had growing up in NY. It's not so good for "warm" ailments which I suppose are like the colds I get now, living in CA. However, I'm not that well-versed in Chinese herbal medicine so I don't know for sure. I just know that ginger tea doesn't work for me now.

When I was in NY, I told a coworker about the tea. He made it way, way too strong and, after drinking it, shivered and shook all night long. However, his cold was totally gone by morning. I don't recommend doing that to anyone.