Baking recipes often call for softened butter, but if you put the butter in the microwave you risk butter soup. Leaving it out at room temp is fine if you've got lots of time. But when your butter is cold and hard and you want it to be warm and soft, just pound it with a rolling pin.
What do people expect when they order a Hot Toddy? Not the original Jerry Thomas version; those are gross, says Jeffrey. Give your guests something flavorful that really warms them up. Start with a good Scotch Whisky and layer on lemon juice, ginger honey syrup and pimento dram. That is something worth drinking on a cold winter night!