A soothing antidote to winter's chill



January 14, 2004|By Sara Engram | Sara Engram,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

With the holidays behind us and several weeks of winter still ahead, it's time for comfort drinks - something soothing to sip as we get back into the routines of those dull but important chores of daily life.

And who better to provide a comfort drink than Marla Cilley, known to thousands of people as the Flylady? Five years ago, Cilley set out to get the clutter out of her house and bring some order into her home and her life. She succeeded and is now a mentor for more than 200,000 members of her free Web site, www.flylady.net, as well as countless readers of her book, Sink Reflections (Bantam Books, 2002, $14.95).

Cilley spends several hours a day in her clutter-free home atop a mountain in Brevard, N.C., writing essays for her Web site and forthcoming books. As she works, she likes to sip something, and her favorite is a concoction she calls "Flylady mocha."

It's a mix, heavy on the milk, which adds much needed calcium to her diet. But it includes enough chocolate to make it a treat and coffee to add some zip.

It's a proportional recipe, so Cilley, ever practical, suggests using the coffee jar as the measuring cup. Start by emptying the coffee into a big bowl, add two jarfuls of chocolate-milk powder and three of powdered milk. Then stir the ingredients together and store in a big glass jar with a 1/4 -cup scoop.

When you're ready for a drink, just add one scoop of powder to one cup of hot water. You can also experiment with your own variations. Cilley says she has tried a hazelnut-flavored coffee with good results.

Packaged in an attractive jar, accompanied by a nice mug, a scoop and directions, it also makes a useful gift, as do other powdered mixes, such as the instant tea mix often called Russian Tea.

Flylady mocha is a great make-ahead treat - just add hot water for a soothing cup of winter comfort. And coming from Flylady herself, it will surely bring a little inspiration for tackling all those chores that are easy to put off - or, like Garrison Keillor's powder-milk biscuits, give you the strength to get up and do the things that need to be done. And who doesn't need extra inspiration, especially in January?

Do you have a favorite cold-weather comfort drink or a good recipe for Russian Tea or some other powdered mix? Send your recipes or suggestions to sips@comcast.net.

Flylady Mocha

Makes 48 ounces of mix

8-ounce jar of instant coffee, regular or decaf

16 ounces Nestle's Quik or other chocolate-milk powder

24 ounces powdered milk

Mix together.

For each serving, dissolve 1/4 cup of the mix in 1 cup of hot water.

Note: If you use a coarse brand of powdered milk, you may want to put the ingredients in a blender or food processor to mix them better.

- Marla Cilley, www.flylady.net

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