Few beverages feel like an autumn day like a mug of hot milk and honey. Add turmeric to it for an extra health boost and you have a golden milk with less spices. In this turmeric latte we’re adding something else, though: a splash of rum. This hot milk and rum with turmeric and honey is my go-to remedy when I feel under the weather in the fall. Might not fight off a cold for real, but it certainly warms you from the inside out!
Blame it on the fact that I am an October-born, but autumn is by far my favourite season. I’ve always found a certain pleasure in seeing the days getting shorter. It can only mean that the golden hour comes earlier and earlier every day. Sure, it rains pretty often, at least here in Sweden. But when it doesn’t rain, nothing else beats the golden hour on a fall day. The blue sky and the red and yellow leaves… ahhh! Such a bliss for the eye! Actually, even rainy days have their charm. Provided you’re lucky enough to be enjoying them from inside a warm house.
Autumn is sadly also a season when many people easily get sick. Changes in temperature make it challenging to always be properly dressed against the cold. Catching a cold or the flu becomes so much easier at this time of the year. This is when hot drinks play a crucial part.
Rum and milk for cold
I find it very comforting to enjoy a hot beverage when I feel a bit down. A hot drink can truly warm you up from the inside out. Certain foods are known to ease a physical discomfort. Add the right ingredients to your hot drink and you’re basically serving yourself a remedy in a mug. In this post I’m sharing the recipe to one of my favourite remedies: hot milk with rum and honey.
Hot milk has been one of the most important foods I grew up with. While many people grow out of their hot milk phase, I’m still very much a fan in my thirties. My mom served me hot milk every evening. If I happened to be a little sick, she’d stir in a generous serving of honey and a tiny splash of rum. Please don’t frown at my mom: she would really only add a tiny splash when I was a little girl. The amount of added rum grew in size when I grew older, so here I’m sharing my adult version.
How to make hot milk and rum
To enjoy this hot milk and rum beverage you need only 4 ingredients. Plase refer to the recipe card below for quantities:
- Milk – possibly whole milk, my favourite in this case is cow’s milk but you can choose according to your preference.
- Honey – whatever honey you have at home. It doesn’t need to be the liquid type as we are stirring it into the hot milk.
- Turmeric powder – nowadays it is easily found even in most supermarkets, but I prefer to get mine at Asian stores.
- Rum – dark rum would be my personal preference, but light works great too. I haven’t tried this recipe with a spiced rum, but I think it would only add even more flavour. Flavoured rum is not recommended.
- Add the milk to a saucepan and set it on medium heat.
- Stir in the honey and turmeric powder until combined.
- Remove the mixture from the heat just before the milk has reached boiling temperature.
- Pour hot milk and honey into a mug and stir in the rum. Serve immediately.
Microwave instead of stovetop – Microwave the milk directly in the mug for 30 seconds. Stir in the honey and turmeric. Microwave another 30 seconds and stir to completely dissolve the honey. If necessary, microwave another 30 seconds (time depends on microwave settings).
Vegan – original golden milk is often made with plant-based milk. This recipe is inspired by the hot milk and honey my mom used to make me, so whole cow’s milk is what I use. You can definitely swap it with any other milk option you prefer. As for the honey, rather than using sugar syrup I would suggest agave syrup, which is the closest in flavour.
Non-alcoholic – Removing the rum from this recipe leaves you with a rather blad version of golden milk. Rum is sure added for a kick, but also flavour. If you cannot have rum, you have two options. One is to use rum flavouring, but in such a case you would be using less as that might be more concentrated, so add sparingly and taste. The other option is to add the rum to the saucepan first and bring it to a boil to evaporate the alcohol, and only add the milk, honey and turmeric later. Rum is very aromatic, so by just adding a teaspoon you can get some flavour while keeping the alcohol content low.
Rum turmeric latte
When my mom used to make me hot milk with honey turmeric was not a thing in Italy. We both discovered it much later in life, to be used in savoury dishes. Even later than that did I learn that turmeric might be great in curries but it can be even greater in milk. With honey. Golden milk it is called. Well, well, it should feature coconut milk and a handful of other spices, but the core concept is hot milk with turmeric. Adding rum only seemed logic.
So here is the recipe I’m featuring today. Feeling your immune system down? Sore throat? Cold symptoms? Or maybe you’re physically fine but it’s autumn and the rain is falling and you just need a beverage that feels like a hug. Warm up some milk, stir in turmeric powder and honey, and only when you remove it from the heat, add a splash of rum. I like to add it at the end to ensure that the alcohol does not evaporate. You want that warm kick, like in Irish coffee, right? Then just wrap yourself up in a fluffy blanket and find a spot by a window to enjoy watching the rain. Love me some autumn ❤
More drinks for the fall!
In the summer I love all sorts of cold cocktails, but nothing beats a nice hot alcoholic beverage on a cold day. If you enjoy this kind of drinks, make sure to try these:
- Polish mulled beer – known in Poland as grzane piwo, beer is served warm with spices and honey.
- Classic mulled wine – unmissable during my Christmas holidays, and a favourite way to drink hearty red wine.
What is your favourite hot drink? Let me know in the comments!
Hot milk and rum with honey and turmeric
- 300 ml whole milk
- 1 tsp honey
- 1/3 tsp turmeric powder
- 50 ml rum
- Add the milk to a saucepan and set on medium heat. Stir in the honey and turmeric powder as the milk warms up. Remove the milk from the heat just before it reaches boiling temperature.
- Pour the milk into a serving mug and add the rum. Enjoy immediately, as reheating may make the alcohol in the rum evaporate.
This post was originally published in October 2018 and has been updated in August 2020 with better wording and a recipe card.