My mother's family is German; we celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve. My Grandma used to make tables full of food. There was always enough food (pardon the cliche) to feed an army. This year we are each going to bring an appetizer and leave the food at that. That's okay with me, as long as we keep the carols. Don't misunderstand, I do not come from a musically inclined family. The carols we sing make us sound like an out of tune Calvin and the Chipmunks clan, and that's before we sing the Christmas Chipmunk song.
We've never drank mulled wine on Christmas Eve. Perhaps we should, it would certainly be better than drinking the sweet red wine that grandma buys in 4-litre jugs each year. The stuff comes packaged like a bottle of moonshine; it tastes about the same.
While I don't recommend using moonshine for this recipe, it is certainly the time to use cheap wine. Pull out that bottle of you-brew wine your neighbour brought over. Now's the time to drink it.
- 1 bottle of inexpensive red wine
- ½ cup apple juice
- ½ cup brandy
- ½ to 1 cup brown sugar, to taste
- 1 orange, sliced with skin on
- 2 cinnamon sticks, broken into 3 pieces each, plus extra for garnish
- 3 star anise
- 6 peppercorns
- 6 cloves
- In a large pot add all ingredients, except brandy. Bring to just below a simmer and keep warm, but not simmering for 20 minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in brandy.
- Serve in a mug with a stick of cinnamon
- Stoke the fire, open a good book, enjoy!