Winter is all about playing in the snow and cozying up by the fire with a warm drink in hand. Well, at least it is in my family. I grew up skiing on my weekends, and lately, snowshoeing and spending days outside on the snowmobile, coming back to the cottage covered in snow and ready for something warm. Unfortunately, I’m not a big lover of hot chocolate and I drink so much tea that I’m often looking for something a little different…and a little stronger…
Hello, Mulled Wine! I tried mulled wine for the first time this past November at the Toronto Christmas Market and quickly fell in love. Not only is it hot and steamy, its rich, loaded with booze, and tasty AF. I decided it was a necessity for our New Years Eve celebrations at our cottage in Muskoka and we were all glad to have it.
Here is my recipe for Mulled Wine, based off of Ina Garten’s recipe, but with a few twists.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 Bottle of red cabernet sauvignon
- 4 Cups of apple cider
- 3 Tsps of honey
- The zest of one orange
- The juice of 3 oranges (keep the rind for garnish)
- 2 Cinnamon sticks (keep extra for garnish)
- 1 Star of anise
- A good pour of brandy…be generous!
Begin by pouring the wine, cider, squeezed orange juice, and brandy into a big pot, as well as adding the orange zest, honey, cinnamon sticks, and star of anise. Bring the mixture to a boil and then simmer for at least 10 minutes. You’ll know its ready when your entire house smells heavenly; a mixture of rich wine and citrus, mingled with a hint of brandy and cinnamon. Like I said, heavenly. You’ll need to strain the mixture before serving to get rid of the seeds, pulp, and larger flavour elements. Once strained, place a cinnamon stick in each glass and place a rind curl on the edge of the glass – the scent of the two will be enough to have you drooling.
Serve piping hot and enjoy by the fire. Happy 2017!