Before we dive into the recipe for our new favourite cold weather warm up, check out some of the history behind this classic brew.
History of the Hot Toddy
- Toddies came from India, the fermented sap of the toddy plant, named tari in Hindi. The British brought back a version of this brew, and originally it was served cold. Eventually, this brew was served hot as a comforting beverage with the same mix of spirits and spices.
- The hot toddy was based on a Scottish cold remedy of whisky, hot water, and spices such as nutmeg or clove. Suggestions that the name comes Tod’s Well, a source of spring water outside of Edinburgh.
- In Dublin, Ireland, Dr. Robert Bently Todd would recommend a brew of hot whisky, lemon and cinnamon.
These are just a few theories about the origins of the hot toddy. One other story is that the Hot Toddy was a drink for Scottish women who didn’t enjoy the taste of Scotch. In American history, the legend goes that colonists used toddies as a liquid courage during the Revolutionary War.
The classic Hot Toddy may vary slightly depending on where you go. It is sure to combine hot water, whisky, Scotch or brandy and lemon, possibly with honey.
Purists might agree that any additions start turning this brew into a hot punch of sorts, but we disagree! Any time there is hot water, why not make it tea?
Chai Toddy Recipe
- 1 tsp Shanti Chai
- 1 oz whiskey (can substitute brandy, Scotch, rum, or any other dark liquor)
- 8 oz boiling water
- Slice of lemon
- Honey or maple syrup (optional)
- Pour 8 oz boiling water over Shanti Chai.
- Remove tea from cup. Add whiskey and honey/maple syrup and garnish with a slice of lemon. We like to toss the lemon right in there.
- Drink while it’s still hot for maximum coziness
Add whatever suits your fancy! Swap an orange slice for lemon, add in other spices if desired, or try with Kamila’s Chamomile Dream instead for a soothing caffeine free brew with a touch of cinnamon.