Cheers! CELEBRATE TWO HEMISPHERES ON DECEMBER’S SOLSTICE
article by Mary L. Holden
Sunlight. It is one gift that keeps on giving—wherever it is on Earth you happen to be—even Mawsynram, India, known as the rainiest place on the planet. Two solstices per year give everyone a chance to pay attention to the most and least hours in a day and night—and to celebrate on each.
On December 21, 2021, at the hour of 15:59 UT*, the northern hemisphere experiences the fewest hours of sunlight as winter emerges, and as the southern hemisphere receives the most lit-up hours in which to welcome summer.
While people of the North this time of year imbibe warmth in the forms of cocoas, nogs, and ciders, Southerners wet their whistles with ades, coolers, and juices. For the sake of unity, here are three nonalcoholic drink recipes (one hot, one cold, one neutral) to celebrate the seasons, the light, the dark, and one that is always tasty any day of the year, and either hemisphere.
Wassail may have arrived in Britain from ancient Rome.
2 cups apple cider
¼ cup fresh squeezed orange juice, pulp strained
1 cinnamon stick
Dash of ground nutmeg
2 whole cloves
Place orange juice, cider, and spices in a small saucepan, bring to a boil then immediately remove from heat. Cool slightly then strain into clear punch glasses with handles. Serves two. (For alcoholic wassail, add either bourbon or rum.)
Lemon Lime Bitters (known as the LLB) is a popular drink Down Under.
½ shot glass fresh lime juice
1 cup lemonade
2-4 dashes of Angostura bitters
In a tall glass, add lime juice and fill to three-quarters with lemonade. Add ice and bitters. Stir and enjoy. (The bitters add minimal alcohol.) Here is an original beverage meant for celebrating everything about the Earth, in any season, on any day—but it is mainly for celebrating The Days of COVID-19 Past (or No More COVID).
1 cup vegetable broth
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. honey
¼ cup sparkling water
Dash of ground pepper
3 thin slices of cucumber
1 whole cherry tomato, cut not quite in half and seeded
Sprig of mint, rosemary, parsley, or basil for garnish
Heat vegetable broth and bring to boil. Cool to lukewarm. Add lemon juice, honey, and pepper. Place cucumber slices into a beverage glass and add ice; pour broth mixture near to top and add sparkling water. Place leafy garnish into slit in tomato and place on rim of glass. Add a straw and make a toast to worldwide health!
The most popular beverage in both hemispheres? Of course, it’s water.
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