My favorite Christmas drink is this mulled red wine, scented with sliced orange, cinnamon, cloves, and star anise. Merry, Merry!
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup water
- 1 medium orange, preferably organic (see note 1)
- 1 750-ml bottle red wine (see note 2)
- 10 whole cloves
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- 3 whole star anise
- Apple slices for garnish (optional)
- Add the sugar and water to a small pot, and heat over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Wash the whole orange and cut it into thin slices.
- Combine the sugar water, orange, red wine, cloves, cinnamon, and star anise in a medium pot. Heat, stirring occasionally, and pressing on the orange slices to release their juices, over very low heat for 30 minutes. Do not let it come to a full boil, because the alcohol in the wine would evaporate.
- Strain the mixture through a sieve to discard spices and the orange, and ladle into glasses. Serve hot.
- Organic orange is better because you’re using the skin, and you don’t want pesticides with your wine.
- Don’t waste money on an expensive bottle of wine: The $ 3–6/bottle is perfectly fine for this.
- White wine instead of red is a great alternative. Use the same ingredients except for the cinnamon sticks, and add 3 1-inch slices of peeled, fresh ginger + 5 cardamom pods.
Keywords: mulled wine