What does a Texan do when temperatures plummet across the state?
Lock the doors, grab a cozy blanket and warm up the Dr Pepper.
That's right. Warm Dr Pepper isn't just an unfortunate find in your back seat on a summer day. It's an intentional treat for generations of Texans.
Some say it's a cold remedy. Others say it's great for game day. We say it's delicious.
We tried a batch of hot Dr Pepper in The Dallas Morning News test kitchen. We were skeptical at first, but by the end were dreaming up boozy remixes on the classic drink.
Hot Dr Pepper is nothing new. It used to be served at the Cotton Bowl and was prescribed as a children's version of a hot toddy.
It might have fallen out of style lately, but it's our new favorite for the cold weather.
Here are a few of our pro tips.
● Don't use corn syrup Dr Pepper. You have to splurge for the good stuff, made with Imperial pure cane sugar. You can find the 8-ounce glass bottles at most grocery stores. If you use the other kind, you risk a drink that's too bitter.
● Heat, but don't boil. You don't want to make Dr Pepper candy. Well, maybe you do, but this isn't the time for that. The drink will naturally bubble as it warms and lose carbonation. That's a good thing; you want it to go flat as you warm it. Just don't warm it so fast that it begins to boil.
● Serve with citrus. A wheel of lemon is perfect for some, while others might want to squeeze in a full wedge or two. Use enough citrus to balance the sweet soda. Pour over the lemon, serve and enjoy!
● Mix it up with some spirits. Bourbon, obviously, would pair well. Also try it with a little vodka or amaretto. Our best bet: Fort Worth's TX Whiskey, just to keep it all in the Lone Star State.
Share your hot Dr Pepper pro tips with us on our Facebook group "Texana: A celebration of Texas."