Home Made Christmas Holiday Spiced Wine Drinks. Save Money and Do it Yourself!

What I'm going to present to you today involves the continuation of my project to provide you with home made (diy-- do it yourself) Christmas holiday drinks to save money; today's being Christmas holiday spiced wine. What I've got here is a collection of recipes to make some awesome drinks that will make both you and your company happy, while saving you money because you're not paying some company for overpriced goods! I have tested them all and I can tell you that they do taste refreshing and they are great for the holiday season. These recipes are a mix of my own creations and ones that I have found on-line, brought together for you to help you save money. Here you go!

Old-Fashioned Mulled Wine

2 cups water
2 cups sugar
1 orange, thinly sliced
2 cinnamon sticks
12 whole cloves
12 whole allspice berries
two 750 ml bottles dry red wine
1 lemon, thinly sliced

Combine all of the ingredients above except the dry red wine in a saucepan that is not aluminum. Stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat of the concoction and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes. Add wine and simmer 10 minutes. Strain mulled wine into heatproof glasses or mugs. Garnish with additional cinnamon sticks and serve. Makes roughly 8 cups.

Spiced Red Wine with Brandy and Citrus

(from Bon Appetit-- December 1996)

"The French often serve flavored wine as an aperitif. This one has a base of red wine infused with orange, lemon, vanilla and cloves; it is later mixed with raspberry brandy and sugar. The drink is best at cool room temperature, accompanied by nibbles such as olives, almonds and crudités. It also makes an excellent Christmas present — just double or triple the recipe, and pour the drink into pretty bottles. Be sure to begin the "winemaking" process at least three weeks before you plan to have the wine or give it as a gift."

1 orange, sliced
/2 lemon, sliced
1 vanilla bean
Peel from 1 orange (orange part only,
removed with vegetable peeler)
6 whole cloves
1 750-ml bottle dry red wine
(such as Côtes du Rhône or Merlot-- my personal preference is the Merlot)
1/2 cup Framboise, eau de vie, or brandy
6 tablespoons sugar

Combine sliced orange and lemon, vanilla bean, orange peel and cloves in large glass jar. Pour wine over. Cover and place in cool dark area for 2 weeks. Strain wine through several layers of cheesecloth into 4-cup measuring cup. Discard solids in cheesecloth. Add Framboise and sugar to wine; stir until sugar dissolves. Pour mixture into wine bottle or decorative bottle. Cork bottle and place in cool dark area for at least 1 week. (Can be made 6 weeks ahead. Store in cool dark area.) Serve in small wineglasses. Makes 3 cups.

Spiced Rum and Tea Punch

(again, Bon Appetit-- December 1996)

"This German drink, called Grossmutters Punsch (Grandmother's Punch), is usually enjoyed warm at midnight on Christmas Eve. It can also be served as a refreshing chilled drink. For a festive touch, add a cinnamon stick to each glass."

2 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons chopped peeled fresh ginger
16 whole cloves
16 whole allspice
1 vanilla bean, chopped
1 tea bag (preferably Earl Grey)
1 750-ml bottle dry red wine
1/4 cup dark rum
Crushed ice (if serving punch chilled)

Combine water, honey, sugar, ginger, cloves, allspice and vanilla bean in heavy large saucepan. Bring mixture to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until honey and sugar dissolve. Boil 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add tea bag; let steep 5 minutes.
Strain syrup into bowl. Add wine and rum. If serving cold, refrigerate until chilled. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) If serving cold, fill 6 glasses with crushed ice. Ladle punch into glasses. If serving hot, bring to simmer in medium saucepan. Pour punch into cups. Makes 6 servings.

Krambambuli (Spiced Wine with Dried Fruit)

(Bon Appetit-- December 1995)

2 chamomile tea bags
2 cups boiling water
A 750-ml bottle Chenin Blanc or other semidry white wine
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup orange juice
1/4 cup light rum
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon raisins
1 tablespoon chopped mixed dried fruit
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Place tea bags in large glass measuring cup. Pour 2 cups boiling water over. Let stand 4 minutes. Discard tea bags. Combine tea, wine and all remaining ingredients in medium saucepan. Stir wine mixture over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Bring mixture just to simmer. Remove from heat. Cover and let steep 20 minutes. Rewarm wine over low heat (do not boil.) Discard bay leaf and cinnamon stick. Ladle wine, raisins and dried fruit into mugs and serve.

Hot Spiced Apple Wine

(Bon Appetit-- December 1992)

6 cups fruity red wine(such as Beaujolais)
6 cups apple cider
1/2 cup sugar
1 orange, thinly sliced
1 lemon, thinly sliced
1 lime, thinly sliced
One 2-inch cinnamon stick
8 whole cloves
8 allspice berries
8 whole black peppercorns

Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally; do not boil. Strain. Ladle punch into mugs and serve.

Wassail Bowl

4 cups apple cider
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup dark rum
1/4 cup brandy
1 tablespoon orange liqueur
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
Salt to taste
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
1/2 orange, thinly sliced
Whipped cream
Freshly grated nutmeg

In a saucepan bring the apple cider to a boil over medium heat, add the brown sugar and cook mixture, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and add the rum, brandy, orange liqueur, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, salt, and fruit slices. Heat mixture over moderate heat, stirring, 2 minutes. Pour the wassail into wine glasses and top it with whipped cream and freshly grated nutmeg. (yum!)

These holiday drinks should be enough to keep you going for a while more-- and so I continue on with my project of providing you with spiced wine drinks for your christmas holiday party that are home made (diy-- do it yourself) that save you money!

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