The nightcap in question is Hot Buttered Rum. Sweet, warm, buttery, spicy...can you think of anything better to soothe the tired soul?
I make this by the mug. Make as much or as little as you want. Just remember: it goes down smoothly so pace yourself.
1 heaping TBS (not packed) brown sugar (I use dark brown sugar)
1 TBS half-and-half
1 healthy shot of spiced rum
1 cup of boiling water
1 TBS butter (unsalted or salted--your choice--both would work)
Grated nutmeg, cinnamon, or pumpkin pie spice to taste
In the bottom of a mug, add the brown sugar, half-and-half, and spiced rum. Pour the boiling water over the top and stir until well combined. Top the drink with the butter and garnish with the nutmeg. Serve immediately.
Don't Freak Out!
1) Make it vegan. Use vegan margarine instead of the butter (I prefer olive oil spread rather than soy but use what you like) and coconut milk (unsweetened or vanilla) instead of the half-and-half. Seasonally, you may also be able to find eggless nog made from coconut milk. Adding it to the Hot Buttered Rum would really drive home those creamy, harvesty, spicy notes.
2) Make it halal / non-alcoholic. This suggestion is purely a matter of taste so you will probably have to play around with it. You can use a combination non-alcoholic rum flavoring and vanilla extract instead of the spiced rum. Start with 1/4 teaspoon of the rum and half that amount for the vanilla, and add an extra dash of pumpkin spice, nutmeg or cinnamon until you get the desired flavor.
3) Use my Masala Butter instead! It's already packed with sweet spicy goodness.