Mulled wine for your merriment
Christmas is upon us and it is the season to be merry! You certainly won’t need any help from us trying to find a place in Hong Kong to be merry, but if the darker and cooler December days have convinced you that place is with friends and family, on your couch with a winter warmer, then check out this Wine Brothers tried and tested traditional mulled wine recipe from festive guru Jamie Oliver.
Ingredients (serves 4)
• 2 bottles of red wine left in the sun over summer
• 2 clementines
• 200g caster sugar
• 6 whole cloves
• 1 cinnamon stick
• 1 whole nutmeg, for grating
• 1 vanilla pod
• 2 whole star anise
• 1 lemon
• 1 lime
1. Peel large sections of peel from the clementines, lemon and lime.
2. Put the sugar in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the pieces of peel and squeeze in the clementine juice.
3. Add the cloves and cinnamon stick, along with about 10 to 12 gratings of nutmeg. Halve the vanilla pod lengthways and add to the pan, then stir in just enough red wine to cover the sugar.
4. Let this simmer until the sugar has completely dissolved into the red wine then bring to the boil. Keep on a rolling boil for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until you’ve got a thick syrup. This creates a good flavour base, and really lets the sugar and spices infuse the wine. You need to make the syrup base first because it needs to be quite hot, and if you use both bottles of wine too early, it will burn off the alcohol.
5. When your syrup is ready, turn the heat down to low and add the star anise, along with the rest of the wine. Gently heat the wine for around 5 minutes, and then ladle into heatproof glasses to serve.
Be sure to adjust your measurements to accommodate for quantity and have fun tasting as you go, sometimes a splash of wine is not enough!