Hot fatty drinks go way back to more than 200 years ago, when folks traveling by coach might stop in at a tavern to warm up, maybe having their drink warmed with a red hot poker from the fireplace. Recipes for Hot Buttered Rums can be found in several old cocktail books such as the 1862 Jerry Thomas' "Bar-Tenders Guide." Technically, this drink is a toddy with the addition of butter. The rum used would have been a darker rum aged in a barrel, so shy away from more modern style white rums and "gold" rums colored with caramel coloring when making this drink.
Here's an idea for making one that's richer and creamier than just chucking a pat of butter with spices in a hot mug of rum that ends up resembling an oil slick.
Hot Buttered Rum
Cream together the following to make enough batter for about 10 drinks.
1/2 cup all natural vanilla ice cream, room temperature
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature (this is not called Hot Margarine Rum for a reason)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
dash vanilla extract
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup demerara sugar (if you can't find the real deal, use regular brown sugar)
Refrigerate until you are ready to serve. If you have the time, refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to come together. The batter will last about a month in the refrigerator and even longer in the freezer.
To serve, bring batter to room temperature.
Preheat your mug with hot water and dump out the water. Add 2 heaping tablespoons of batter to the warmed mug and top with 1 1/2 ounces of dark rum, and stir to dissolve. (Also great with bourbon instead of rum!) Fill the rest of the mug with hot water and stir.
Optional: top with fresh whipped cream and an extra sprinkle of fresh ground nutmeg.
The batter is also versatile enough to offer it to non-drinking guests. Just add it to hot chocolate, coffee, hot cider or hot water sans the liquor. And it's great even spread on toast for a breakfast treat!
Alabama-born LeNell Smothers defines herself first and foremost as a bartender, but she's been called many things -- most recently, the head mixtress at Casa Cóctel. She's owned her own whiskey label, called Red Hook Rye, and has been recognized by her home state as an honorary Colonel. Other interests include gin, sin and men.