Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Celebrate National Mulled Wine Day

I’ll make this short and sweet. Tuesday, March 3rd is National Mulled Wine Day. Sipping a glass of mulled wine is the perfect way to bid winter a final farewell before spring rushes in with warmer temperatures and those wonderful crisp, white wines.

Mulled or warmed wines were first served in Rome during the 2nd century. As the Romans traveled the continent, they shared the mulled wine recipe with other communities including what is now England, Germany, the Netherlands and Austria.

Mulled wine goes by many names including glögg (Sweden), gløgg (Norwegian), gluhwein (German), vin chaud (French), and vin brulé (Italian). It is usually served during the holiday season as a festive drink at parties or around a bonfire.

Mulled wine recipes abound. Most call for using red wine, usually claret or port, and adding various mulling spices which can include ginger, cloves, cinnamon and anise. Fruit may also be added; the most popular being orange slices, raisins or cranberries. The drink is then served piping hot or warm.

Here is a standard crockpot recipe for mulled wine that will keep you warm all evening as you celebrate the end of winter and anticipate the coming spring.

Mulled Wine Recipe
1 bottle of red wine (your choice)
Up to ½ cup sugar (according to taste)
Slice of ginger root
6 cloves
½ teaspoon aniseed
½ teaspoon allspice
2 cinnamon sticks + one for each mug
1 orange (peeled and sliced)
½ cup raisins or cranberries
¼ to ½ cup brandy (optional)

Pour wine into crockpot, add sugar and stir in spices. Turn dial to medium and let wine begin to simmer (20 minutes). Turn down to low and add fruit to crockpot, along with brandy, if using.  Stir well. Wait 10 minutes, pour wine in mugs (leave spices in crockpot), and enjoy by a roaring fire.

~ Joy